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Pilloor pipeline bursts too frequent

Karthik Madhavan


TWAD to replace concrete pipes

at Rs. 18 crore

It will be implemented

in two phases


COIMBATORE: Since April 2010, the Pilloor water supply pipeline has developed one problem or the other on nine occasions. On each of the instances, the Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage (TWAD) Board had to stop water supply to the Coimbatore Corporation and many other local bodies for two days. The bursts have happened on the main supply line that carries 125 million litres a day, say the Corporation sources. And on each of the nine occasions, the Corporation was able to resume water supply only after four days.

Pumping out water before the beginning of the work and charging the supply line before starting distribution to residents takes so many days, the sources explain. For the residents, any such disruption on the water supply line means that they will get water once in seven to nine days as the water supply cycle changes. Under normal circumstances, they get water once in four days.

The reason the Board cites for the pipeline bursts is that after rains, the wet clay soil is unable to bear the weight of the pipeline and the water therein and it breaks up at joints.

The Board sources say the pre-stressed concrete pipeline of 1,500 mm diameter is unable to withstand the pressure from increased vehicle movement, road development works, etc.

“It is in fact the biggest pipeline network in Tamil Nadu,” the sources say and add that after the Pilloor experience, the Board has given up using the concrete pipes to convey water.

The Board has now started using mild steel pipes. It will replace the pre-stressed concrete pipes with the steel pipes on an 8.1 km stretch, between Sathyamangalam and Mettupalayam road, on the Pilloor supply line that is prone to bursts.

The sources say the Rs. 18-crore project is being implemented in two phases. Work for the first 1.7 km is underway and the Board has floated tender for the remaining 6.4 km stretch.

Once the work is completed, the frequency in disruption of water supply will come down, the officials assure.

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