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Kerala - Thiruvananthapuram Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Leaks detected on pipeline at Pattoor

Staff Reporter

Road to be dug up to facilitate repair

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The detection of leaks on a water pipeline at Pattoor, where the road was resurfaced as part of the ongoing City Roads Improvement Project, has caused concern. What is worrying is the possibility of similar leaks in drinking water and sewerage pipelines passing beneath the 44-odd km of roads being rebuilt in the city.

The road at Pattoor will be dug up in a couple of places to repair the leaking pipeline. Almost all the stretches of roads scheduled for rebuilding have pipelines, some of 1933 vintage, passing beneath them. In 2004, the Kerala Water Authority (KWA) had proposed that all drinking water and sewerage lines passing beneath the roads being rebuilt be shifted to either side of the road so that if a leak or burst does happen, the carriageway need not be dug up.

The KWA had also prepared an estimate of Rs.13.4 crores for re-laying pipelines along 42.47 km of road. The proposal was, reportedly, deemed costly and as one that could not be fitted into the BOT scheme under which the improvement programme of the roads was to be executed. The former Chief Secretary Babu Jacob, who is now the advisor to the Government on externally aided projects, told The Hindu that the present plan to tackle the problem raised by the KWA is to provide a cross duct every 500 metres in the roads that are being improved.

"After the roads are built and if a line leaks, the KWA will lay a fresh pipe on the footpath; we will have provision for this beneath the footpaths. The leaking section of the pipe will then be bypassed by taking `U' connections from either side of it through the cross duct," he said. Sources in the KWA term the proposal impractical.

"Such a zig-zag water line will affect the flow of water. Even to take a `U' connection from a section of the pipeline, the road will have to be dug," a senior KWA engineer said.

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