Major burst pipe leaves local residents without water for several days

2016-07-01 10:45
Municipal workers repair the leaking pipe on Otto’s Bluff road.PHOTO:

Municipal workers repair the leaking pipe on Otto’s Bluff road.PHOTO: (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - Pelham, Scottsville, Alexandra, Bisley, Oribi and surrounding areas were left without water for almost four days after a major burst pipe led to other major faults in the pipeline.

Msunduzi municipal spokesperson Nqobile Madonda said a burst occurred on the inlet at the Bisley Reservoir, which affected many areas.

She said the repair to the steel pipe took more than eight hours and after it was repaired, another problem was located.

“To add to the problems, an airlock caused a blockage for the water to pass through and the water started flowing back into the reservoir,” Madonda said.

She said the water supply should have resumed by late yesterday.

Fuming residents called The Witness saying they had been left without water and no information as to when the water would return.

One resident living in King’s Place in Scottsville called in weeping, saying she was “struggling” without water.

“I am in a wheelchair and my husband is ill and we haven’t been able to flush our toilet or wash ourselves. We are living in filth and no one wants to help us,” she said.

Afraid of being victimised, the resident said she called the municipal call centre numerous times and eventually had the phone put down on her.

“I called so many times and the one lady asked why was I crying. We are living in horror. I cannot take it anymore,” she said.

Another resident, living in Jesmond Road, said the situation was “really annoying”.

He said there was a slight “dribble” of water coming from his garden tap and he had to wait for hours to fill his bucket.

“I feel very sorry for those working in the municipal call centre as they are kept completely out of the picture and have no idea what is going on. They are the ones who have to deal with frustrated people like me and I just feel sorry for them,” he said.

A Bisset Road resident from Pelham said no agent in the call centre could tell her when the water would return.

“A water tanker was sent to our area last night but it is super-frustrating to wake up daily to no water,” she said.

A burst pipe also affected water services to Copesville residents whilst Clarendon and Montrose residents were also affected after a problem occurred in the Clarendon reservoir.

• kailene.pillay@witness.co.za

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  water
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