Viral Pictures of SMART Tunnel Flood Untrue

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Pictures of the alleged flooding of the SMART tunnel that went viral on Sunday (Nov 11) were untrue.

Rizal Hakimm

On Sunday, Bernama published pictures and a report of a man who escaped via a car window as floodwaters gushed into a road tunnel near Jalan Tun Razak heading towards KLCC (and not at the SMART tunnel, as alleged in the viral messages).

Stormwater Management and Road Tunnel (SMART) has clarified that the picture of a car partially submerged in floodwaters in a tunnel on Sunday was not at the SMART tunnel.

In a statement on Monday (Nov 12), it said the car was trapped in the tunnel leading from Jalan Tun Razak to the KLCC car park.

SMART said that at 5.49pm on Sunday, it had received a signal from the Department of Irrigation and Drainage to close the SMART highway from traffic due to a heavy downpour and to enable the SMART Mode 3 activation, where the road was cleared and closed to traffic.

“Mode 3 is the status used to indicate that the SMART tunnel is being operated to divert excess water from Sg Klang and Sg Ampang away from the SMART coverage areas, thus, saving it from floods,” it said in its statement.

SMART added that its tunnel’s major role was to mitigate floods in areas deemed as the Central Business District (CBD) which includes Jalan Tun Perak, Jalan Melaka, Leboh Ampang, and Dataran Merdeka and its surroundings.

“These areas are currently free from flooding incidences but SMART Management and Operations team is closely monitoring the status of Sg Kelang that is flowing through these areas,” it said.

It also assured the public that its team was on standby around the clock.

SMART also advised the public to get information on the SMART tunnel’s operational status via social media, radio stations, TV, and newspapers and also the variable message sign (VMS).

Heavy rain on Sunday evening had trapped several drivers in a road tunnel near Jalan Tun Razak.

A photo of a driver who sat on top of his car in a tunnel went viral on social media.

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Social media users then assumed that the photo of the partially submerged car happened in the SMART tunnel.

Bernama said the victim, identified only as Teh, 26, had quickly climbed out of his car’s window when water started seeping into his car.

Five other vehicles were also trapped in the tunnel, but the Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department managed to bring all victims to a safe location.

On a related matter, Federal Territories Minister Khalid Abdul Samad said his ministry would think of the next course of action against contractors found guilty of clogging up the drainage system.

He said the ministry would monitor and supervise the construction sites more closely so that flash floods around Kuala Lumpur could be addressed.

“Our problem is that we have several ongoing development projects and it is difficult for us to monitor them 24 hours.

“In fact, I have met and discussed the issue with mayor Datuk Hisham Ahmad Dahlan at the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).

“We will take action to determine all clogging issues will be dealt with.

“We want to ensure contractors carry out their work properly to prevent clogging of drains,” he said.

 


Earlier report: Nov 12, Report: Rosmah, Ex-Aide to Face New Charges over RM1.25B Solar Hybrid Project