For the first time since it was constructed in 1944, Poondi reservoir will get emergency shutters installed in a few days. Once the work on stop log gates or emergency shutters is completed, the project to repair the 14 floodgates would start by next week. With the installation of stop log gates, two shutters could be lifted and repaired simultaneously.
This is a significant move as it would help take up major repair work in the floodgates of the reservoir.
Officials of the Water Resources Department said that the trial run of the two sets of adjustable steel stop log gates, which are 15 feet high and 40 feet wide, would begin this week. The sets weighing a total of 110 tonnes are being fabricated now.
“We also have two scour vents through which we flush sediments accumulated in the reservoir during heavy flood. This would also be repaired in the coming months,” an official said.
The leakage from the floodgates was minimal. However, it was important to repair the damaged parts of the shutters as no major project has been taken up so far. “We also sought the help of two divers from Royapuram to check the condition of foundation laid a decade ago for the emergency shutters at the depth of 32 ft,” the official said.
The project worth nearly Rs. 1 crore would be completed before the onset of the northeast monsoon this year. At present, Poondi reservoir has storage of 2,475 million cubic feet (mcft), a little over the storage last year.
The combined storage of the four reservoirs, including those at Cholavaram, Red Hills and Chembarambakkam that feed city's drinking water supply, stood at 6,385 mcft against 11,057 mcft.
On average, the water bodies lose five mcft of water daily owing to evaporation. However, the city could be supplied with the available sources for six more months.
Officials said that the Krishna water supply from Kandaleru reservoir, Andhra Pradesh, for this spell between January and April would be further delayed. Water would be released to the city only by end of next month. The Andhra Pradesh government is repairing the damaged siphon, a structure that regulates flow in the Kandaleru Poondi canal, near Varadapalayam.