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Corporation races against time to repair damaged sewer pipe

Staff Reporter
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The concrete pipe on Mill Road, laid 40 years ago, caved in due to usage

Workers engaged in laying new pipelines to replace damaged ones on Mill Road in the city on Sunday.—PHOTO: S. SIVA SARAVANAN
Workers engaged in laying new pipelines to replace damaged ones on Mill Road in the city on Sunday.—PHOTO: S. SIVA SARAVANAN

On Sunday morning, Corporation engineers were busy working on Mill Road, near the flyover. They had barricaded the road, right from the Mill Road — N.H. Road Junction to the roundabout on the flyover to prevent the entry of vehicles. Within the barricaded zone, were heavy machinery, concrete pipes, workers and officials.

The Corporation engineers said that they were removing sewer lines that got damaged a couple of days ago. The 600mm concrete pipes, laid 40 years ago, caved in due to usage. The earth above it sank, created a dent on the road, and the sewage started overflowing onto the road through manholes as the earth choked the flow.

The engineers said that they first diverted the sewage from Lawley Road, Sundakamuthur, Thadagam Road, Gandhi Park, Sukhrawarpet, Mill Road and Thiagaraya Pudhu Veethi at four points — Thadagam Road, Gandhi Park, Mill Road — N.H. Road Junction and Thiagaraya Pudhu Veethi so that the waste water reached Muthannankulam, the open drain along the Good Shed Road, Valangulam and the sewage treatment plant in Ukkadam.

They did so to ensure flow of sewage and also to prevent it from entering the work spot on Mill Road. They then used a 120 tonne earth mover to dig the road but it was of no use as machine could not do the job.

They then used a 200 tonne earth mover. They used the machine to first drill holes across the road to remove asphalt to access the damaged pipeline. After removing the pipeline and the earth around it, they began placing fresh concrete pipelines, one after another to cover the entire 84m stretch of the damaged Trunk Main.

The engineers said that by Sunday afternoon they had completed 50 per cent of the task in that they had placed the concrete pipes, cemented the joints using special cement and filled earth atop the pipes. But they had to abandon the work around 5pm to enable drinking water supply to Town Hall and areas around it, for the pipeline carrying the water sat next to the damaged sewer line. If they were to remove earth, the drinking water pipeline too would have caved in, without being able to withstand the pressure of the running water.

The water supply went on for about three hours and they commenced the work around 8pm, the engineers said and added that they hoped to work over night to restore the traffic by Monday morning.

City Engineer K. Sugumar, Central Zone Chairman K. Aadhinarayanan and Ward 81 Councillor M.A. Kuthbutheen were at the spot supervising the work.

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