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High water pressure rupturing old lines

Thursday, August 9, 2018
A leaking WASA main along the Southern Main Road at Otaheite. Photo by:KRISTIAN DE SILVA

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Even as residents face water shortages across several regions of the country, high water pressure pumped by the Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) is believed to be ripping off chunks of asphalt and concrete along the Southern Main Road, between Otaheite to La Brea.

A source at WASA said the Authority has started increasing the water pressure from the Oropouche Booster station to supply the Mitsubishi petrochemical plant which is being constructed at Union Estate, La Brea.

“The corroded main water lines cannot handle the water pressure and this is causing them to rupture on a daily basis at several spots along the Southern Main Road,” the source added.

A WASA team locked off the water yesterday and repaired two major leaks near the SM Jaleel Otaheite headquarters.

Keegan Fung, who operates an auto mechanical garage at Otaheite, said he was frustrated with the constant road damage.

“The driveway of the business place is badly damaged. WASA did some repairs a month and a half ago and they put some crush material on the road which is now filled with water. The water from by SM Jaleel runs down the hill and gathers in front of my garage. The road is raising up a few inches off the ground and this is a terrible hazard,” Fung said.

Fung said he has placed a yellow container inside the hole to alert drivers from hitting the hole.

“Big trucks and buses knock over the container. There is a bridge before Red Brick Trace which is being undermined. The road is being undermined. The concrete from the pavement is cracking up,” Fung said.

President of the Otaheite Fishing Association Spencer Persad said the constant water leaks triggered a water crisis in some areas.

“We have more water on the road than in our pipes,” Persad said.

He also said that the wet road conditions were a hazard to motorists.

“We have had lots of accidents here. We want the authorities to look into this problem,” Persad said.

Taxi driver Fraser Fredericks said the deplorable road conditions was causing hardship to motorists.

“We are spending too much money to repair our vehicles. We want WASA to look into this now before the entire road is undermined,” Fredericks said.

WASA’s communications manager Daniel Plenty said yesterday that WASA is aware of the leaks and are in the process of repairing them.

Asked whether WASA will consider reducing the water pressure going to the Mitsubishi plant, Plenty said this information has not yet been confirmed as a source for the leaks.


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