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Burst pipe washes out order on road,city stopped by biggest jam in weeks

An old water pipeline broke open near Pragati Maidan early on Wednesday evening,bringing traffic in surrounding areas to a near halt and also forcing the authorities to cut off supply from the Sonia Vihar water treatment plant a few hours later.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi |
June 18, 2009 1:46:44 am

An old water pipeline broke open near Pragati Maidan early on Wednesday evening,bringing traffic in surrounding areas to a near halt and also forcing the authorities to cut off supply from the Sonia Vihar water treatment plant a few hours later.

Delhi Jal Board (DJB) spokesperson Sanjam Chima said the plant had to be shut down to control the flow of water. “The line has been isolated and we shall use a parallel channel till the problem is rectified. The supply,hopefully,will be restored tomorrow,” he said.

A senior DJB officer said water is supplied at great pressure through these pipes and a slight bend in the channel could reverse the flow,leading to leakages. He said this 1,200-mm pipeline had outlived its utility.

The Jal Board,in a communique,has alerted localities under the command of the Greater Kailash,Jal Vihar and Okhla pumping stations — stating the supply will be erratic. It has said supply will be restored soon through an alternate system and that it will be back to its normal pressure by Thursday morning.

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Officials said the plant had to be shut down around 6.30 pm to separate the defective line.

The pipeline,or the Greater Kailash mainline,broke on Ring Road near Pragati Maidan around 4 pm. Within minutes,the water burst to the surface and flooded the road. The traffic slowdown,in large parts of Central and South Delhi,lasted till late evening.

The worst-affected was the home-bound crowd,since the traffic barely moved for the first one hour,a police officer said. The rows lengthened till the India Gate hexagon,up to Barakhamba Road and Humayun Road and till as far as Ashram and Lajpat Nagar in the south.

The officer said it took a long time for the traffic to smooth out because the load of vehicles became heavy as the evening progressed.

Ring Road,the officer said,was the worst-hit near Bhairon Marg — where the pipe burst — and the jam snaked out south on both sides. Commuter Kasima Gupta,who took an auto from the Pragati Maidan station around 6.30 pm,said she could manage to reach India Gate only at 8.30.

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