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PUB to take action against Samwoh Corporation for unauthorised drainage works327 to take action against Samwoh Corporation for unauthorised drainage works10/9/2021 4:00:00 PMContractor’s works had affected the drainage system, which caused severe flooding at Pasir Ris-Tampines traffic junction on 20 Aug 2021Issue DateOverviewAbout PUB, Singapore’s National Water Agency Find out more about us<p>​<strong style="text-align:justify;">​​Singapore, 11 Sept 2021</strong><span style="text-align:justify;"> – National Water Agency PUB will be taking enforcement action against construction company </span>Samwoh<span style="text-align:justify;"> Corporation Pte Ltd, after investigations revealed it had carried out unauthorised drainage works that resulted in severe flooding for nearly two hours at the junction of Tampines Avenue 10 and </span>Pasir<span style="text-align:justify;"> </span>Ris<span style="text-align:justify;"> Drive 12 on the morning of 20 Aug 2021.</span></p><p style="text-align:justify;"> <strong>Severe flooding</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">2          PUB first alerted the public to a flood at 7.58am and immediately deployed our Quick Response Team (QRT) to the affected location. The flood affected a 200m section of the traffic junction, with floodwaters that reached a depth of around 500mm (about knee-level) in some areas. A total of 13 vehicles were found partially submerged in water and several motorists required help to evacuate their vehicles.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">3          Our QRT officers, together with officers from the Land Transport Authority, Singapore Police Force and Singapore Civil Defence Force, diverted traffic and rendered assistance to stranded motorists and pedestrians. While heavy rain in the area had stopped by around 9am, the flooding persisted and only fully subsided at 9.40am.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">4          This location is not a flood-prone area nor a flood hotspot – the stormwater drainage system is more than adequate to cope with the rainfall intensity experienced on 20 Aug. The amount of rainfall observed at this location was also comparable to recent rain events that occurred on 5 Apr 2021 and 22 Nov 2020, when no flooding was observed. </p><p style="text-align:justify;"> <strong> ​</strong><strong>Post-flood investigation</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">5          Following the incident, PUB conducted a thorough investigation to determine the cause of flooding (<em>see Annex for infographic</em>) and found that Samwoh, who is carrying out road widening works along Tampines Ave 10, had blocked off the existing roadside drain and diverted the stormwater flow to a new drain section which was still under construction. This new drain section was not properly connected back to the existing drain and was partially obstructed by scaffoldings. Samwoh had also failed to seek PUB's approval to proceed with the proposed drainage diversion works. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">6          Samwoh's unauthorised drainage works significantly impeded the discharge of stormwater into the downstream Sungei Api Api<sup>1</sup>, resulting in floodwater accumulating at the traffic junction as it is the lowest point in the vicinity. PUB subsequently instructed Samwoh to carry out prompt rectification works to remove all obstructions and ensure stormwater can be conveyed effectively in the drain section.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;"> <strong>Contractor to be taken to task</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">7          PUB takes a serious view of contractors carrying out unauthorised works that will interfere with the stormwater drainage system. Unauthorised alterations may affect the functioning of the system, as the drains, canals and rivers are interconnected. Under the Sewerage and Drainage Act, offenders may be fined up to $50,000 for works affecting the stormwater drainage system, and up to $20,000 for unauthorised alteration of the stormwater drainage system. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">8          Mr Yeo Keng Soon, Director of PUB's Catchment and Waterways Department, said: “This prolonged flooding incident was entirely man-made. It would not have happened if the contractor had complied with PUB's regulations for drainage work. PUB maintains a comprehensive network of roadside drains, canals and rivers that convey stormwater into reservoirs or out to sea – it is imperative that our drains are kept free flowing, especially as we experience more frequent and intense rainfall due to climate change. This incident should serve as a stark warning to all contractors that any construction works carried out must not adversely affect the storm water drainage system."</p><p style="text-decoration:underline;">Annex: Infographic on cause of flooding<br></p><p style="text-decoration:underline;text-align:center;"> <img src="/PublishingImages/PUB%20infographic_20%20Aug%20flooding%20(002).jpg" alt="PUBInfographic" style="margin:5px;" /> <br> </p><p> <sup>1</sup> PUB's water level sensors showed that Sungei Api Api, which discharges to the sea, was about half-full at the time of the flooding incident​<br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">​<span>PUB is a statutory board under the Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment (MSE). It is the national water agency, which manages Singapore's water supply, water catchment, and used water in an integrated way. From April 2020, PUB also took on the responsibility of protecting Singapore's coastline from sea-level rise as the national coastal protection agency.</span><span> </span></p><p style="text-align:justify;">PUB has ensured a diversified and sustainable supply of water for Singapore with the Four National Taps (local catchment water, imported water, NEWater, desalinated water). PUB leads and coordinates whole-of-government efforts to protect Singapore from the threat of rising seas and the holistic management of inland and coastal flood risks.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">PUB calls on everyone to play a part in conserving water, in keeping our waterways clean, and in caring for Singapore's precious water resources. If we all do our little bit, there will be enough water for all our needs – for commerce and industry, for living, for life. <br></p><p>​Like us at <a href=""></a> <br> Follow us on <a href=""></a> and <a href=""></a> <br> Subscribe to our channel at <a href=""></a> <br> Visit our website at <a href=""></a>​<br></p>