No-water misery as pipes fail

2009-07-21 00:00

CONSUMERS in the uMngeni and uMshwati Municipalities were without water for up to four days last week after three pipes burst.

uMshwati Municipality consumers were without water from last Tuesday to Friday after a large pipe ruptured and disrupted the supply. Further disruptions were caused when a farmer working on his land inadvertently struck an underground water pipe.

Consumers in the uMngeni Municipality went without water last Thursday after a pipe burst in the Howick area.

To restore uMshwati’s water supply, uMgungundlovu District Municipality’s technical services manager, Bheki Mbambo, said technicians had to dig about five metres down to fix an underground pipe near Wartburg. He said they managed to fix the problem, but soon afterwards the water supply was interrupted once again when a farmer struck a pipe.

A pipe burst caused by the build-up of pressure resulted in the disturbance of water services in uMngeni, but the problem was quickly isolated and solved, said Mbambo.

He said the municipality relies on uMgeni Water to supply water in bulk and they are working together to ensure a functioning service.

Mbambo said ageing infrastructure is a problem faced by many municipalities country-wide, but they have teams in place to respond to crises when necessary.

uMgungundlovu District Municipality municipal manager S’bu Khuzwayo apologised to water consumers in the affected areas for the inconvenience.

“The causes which led to the breakdown in the supply of water to these areas were most unfortunate and were due entirely to circumstances beyond the control of the district municipality.

“The technicians … worked tirelessly to do so in the shortest time possible to minimise disruption and we thank them for their dedication,” Khuzwayo said.

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