Sign In

Press Release Detail



PUB boosts flood response capabilities ahead of Northeast Monsoon334 boosts flood response capabilities ahead of Northeast Monsoon18/11/2021 4:00:00 PM• New fleet of 13 flood response vehicles equipped to drive through higher floodwaters • Enhanced flood monitoring with integrated dashboard and upgraded radar technology • Successful trial of Automatic Flood Barrier to protect residential and commercial buildings • New Telegram channel to provide timely alerts on flash floods garnered more than 10k subscribers in less than a week Issue DateOverviewAbout PUB, Singapore’s National Water Agency Find out more about us<p style="text-align:justify;"> <strong>​​​​​Singapore, 19 November 2021 </strong>– With wetter weather expected as the Northeast Monsoon season approaches, National Water Agency PUB has rolled out a slew of new initiatives to enhance our rainfall forecasting, monitoring, and flood response capabilities to keep public and motorists out of harm's way during flash floods. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">2          As climate change brings about more frequent and intense rainfall that could temporarily overwhelm our drainage capacity, the ability to forecast and monitor impending heavy storms becomes more important than ever. PUB has recently doubled the number of X-band radars to six, creating a more robust monitoring network with greater coverage and improving the accuracy of our rainfall measurements and forecasts. X-band radars provide precipitation data at high temporal and spatial resolution, which will enable PUB to issue public alerts and deploy resources to potential flood locations in a timelier manner.<br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">3          To further boost PUB's flood monitoring capabilities, we have expanded our Catchment and Waterways Operations System (CWOS)<sup>[1]</sup>​ for real-time monitoring of reservoir and drainage operations to also capture and include all flood-related data from across the island (water level sensors, flood response vehicle locations, CCTV cameras and rainfall forecast) on a single platform. This integrated dashboard greatly enhances monitoring efforts at PUB's Joint Operations Centre (JOC).<br></p><p style="text-decoration:underline;text-align:center;"> <img src="/sites/assets/PressReleaseAssets/20211119Image1.jpg" alt="PUB officers monitor data" style="margin:5px;" /> <br>​ <em>PUB officers monitor data from across the island at the joint operations centre round the clock and alert the relevant teams quickly in the event of a flash flood.</em></p><p style="text-align:justify;">4          Quick response time is crucial before and during flash flood incidents. A fleet of 13 new flood response vehicles, modified according to PUB's requirements, are now equipped with features such as a GPS tracker and a pan-tilt-zoom camera to stream real-time vehicle location and flood conditions on the road to PUB's JOC. These enhancements enable PUB to better coordinate the vehicles' deployment remotely, direct and assign the response team more quickly to locations where heavy rain is expected. The vehicles are also able to drive through higher floodwaters of up to 700mm and are stocked with portable flood barriers and inflatable flood bags. When onsite, PUB officers may need to close off affected road sections, direct traffic away from floodwaters and deploy flood barriers. The vehicles have been progressively deployed since April this year (details in <a href="/sites/assets/PressReleaseDocuments/20211119Annex1.pdf" target="_blank">Annex A</a>).<br></p> ​​ <p style="text-decoration:underline;text-align:center;"> <img src="/sites/assets/PressReleaseAssets/20211119Image2.jpg" alt="Officers Dev Krithyvasan (left) and Abdul Aziz bin Abdul Rahman" style="margin:5px;" /> <br>​ <em>Officers Dev Krithyvasan (left) and Abdul Aziz bin Abdul Rahman from PUB's Quick Response Team with new flood response vehicle</em><br><em>Right: Flood warning sign to warn drivers of floods</em></p><p style="text-align:justify;"> <strong>Strengthening Community Resilience and new PUB Flood Alerts Telegram channel </strong> <br>5          Mr Yeo Keng Soon, PUB's Director of Catchment & Waterways Department said, “Over the years, PUB has been enhancing our capabilities in flood monitoring and response with new technologies and carrying out ongoing improvements to the drainage system for long-term resilience. However, we can never predict nature or cater to every extreme rainfall event to eliminate floods."</p><p style="text-align:justify;">6          “It is thus imperative for us to strengthen our resilience as a community to flood incidents. Preparing and responding to flood incidents is an essential component of achieving greater resilience. For example, building owners must ensure that flood protection measures in their developments remain effective and consider suitable flood barriers to keep out stormwaters; contractors must check that the drains and canals at their worksites are not clogged with silt and debris. Members of the public can prepare themselves for sudden changes in weather and potential flash floods by subscribing to flood alerts. We will continue to invest in new flood management capabilities while working closely with all stakeholders to improve public preparedness to flood incidents." <br></p><p style="text-decoration:underline;text-align:center;"> <img src="/sites/assets/PressReleaseAssets/20211119Image3.jpg" alt="Fortune Park condominium" style="margin:5px;" /> <br> ​ <em>Left to right: Before and after AFB is raised at Fortune Park condominium</em></p><p style="text-align:justify;">7          An automated flood barrier (AFB), that was trialled at Fortune Park condominium in July this year, is a new flood protection solution that building owners can consider. Installed at the entrance of the condominium leading to the basement carpark, the AFB utilises approaching floodwaters to buoy itself up and block flood water from entering the premises, and lowers back underground when water levels subside without the need for any human or mechanical activation. <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">8          Following the trial, PUB has determined that the AFB is a viable and cost-efficient solution for flood protection. We encourage building owners to implement the AFB as part of the flood protection measures for existing developments situated in low-lying areas. In recent years, PUB has introduced several new devices such as Dam Easy Flood Panels, Floodgate and Portable Flood Barriers to its suite of portable flood protection devices, which can be deployed by home and building owners quickly during heavy rain. To date, PUB has loaned out 511 of such flood protection devices and distributed around 10,000 inflatable flood bags to residents and businesses in locations which experience frequent flooding. <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">9          PUB has also recently launched a new Telegram channel (<a href="" target="_blank"></a>) on 10 November 2021 that provides an additional means for the public to receive timely updates on heavy rain, potential flood risk locations and flash floods areas on-the-go. Within the first five days of its launch, the channel garnered more than 10,000 subscribers. Members of the public can also subscribe to SMS alerts at PUB's website, visit PUB's Facebook Page or download the myENV mobile application. (Refer to <span style="text-decoration:underline;">Annex B</span> for the full list of platforms). </p><p style="text-align:justify;"> <strong>Continuous investments in drainage improvement projects </strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">10        To improve Singapore's longer-term flood resilience, PUB continuously invests in enhancements to drainage infrastructure, with almost $2 billion spent on drainage works in the last decade to alleviate flooding and support new developments.  Another $1.4 billion will be invested over the next five years on drainage improvement works. Ongoing projects include Bedok Canal, the widening and deepening of Bukit Timah Canal, improvements to Opera Estate Outlet Drain, improvement of drains at Seletar North Link, and the construction of the Syed Alwi Detention Tank<sup>[2]</sup>. </p><p style="text-align:center;">​***<br></p><p> <sup>[1]</sup> The Catchment and Waterways Operations Systems was first implemented in November 2016 for real-time monitoring of reservoir and drainage operations in the Marina Catchment.<br><sup>[2]</sup> Full information on drainage infrastructure projects can be found at PUB's website: <a href="" target="_blank"></a>​<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><br><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>​<br>