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Following last week’s flash floods that hit Kuala Lumpur as well as the Klang Valley, the authorities are looking for long term solutions to prevent the disaster from striking again. In a report by The Malay Mail, KL mayor Datuk Seri Mhd Amin Nordin Abdul Aziz said an underground waterway big enough to serve as an outlet for water to flow out of the city must be built.

“Heavy rainfall for two or three straight hours guarantee there will be an overflow of water because of our geographical location. We need a channel to divert the excess water from the city. A big underground waterway is a feasible solution,” said Amin. He also requested that the Department of Irrigation and Drainage bring the proposal up to the federal government as it is within its jurisdiction.

Recently, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said that inefficient drainage systems in affected locations was the cause of flash floods occurring. Mhd Amin said it is possible to install water pumps in flood hotspots such as Jalan Bangsar, Jalan Pudu and Jalan Semantan, but such a move would not address the underlying problem.

“We installed four water pumps in Jalan Chan Sow Lin last year which solved the woes there, but not flooding in the Klang Valley as a whole. We need a solution which ensures every part of the city is ready to receive continuous rainfall with the intensity of more than 80 mm per hour,” he explained.

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Adding to this, Mhd Amin wants the interconnected systems of existing tunnels, culverts and water retention ponds to be studied in order to improve its efficiency in preventing flash floods. “Study it, understand its mechanism. Only then we will know if it needs to be upgraded or more of it should be built,” he said.

According to Mhd Amin, DBKL would present a list of problems in KL and proposed solutions to Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Mansor. The proposal from DBKL is expected to be ready in a fortnight’s time.

Touching on the River of Life project, the KL mayor said the project was not aimed at preventing flash floods, but rather to clean up and beautify the dirty rivers in the Klang Valley, while developing the areas surrounding it. The project, estimated to be valued at around RM4 billion, is part of the transformation plan to enhance Kuala Lumpur’s liveability index, and may take two to three years to complete.