Wellington Scoop

Six days to fix blocked wastewater pipe near SH2

blocked pipe

News from Wellington Water
Wellington Water discovered an unpleasant surprise in a blocked wastewater pipe near State Highway 2 in Wellington.

Two items – a piece of pipe and some rags, had lodged themselves tightly in the pipe causing a blockage originally identified on Monday.

Wellington Water Chief Wastewater Advisor Steve Hutchison says that it is disappointing to see another blockage caused by un-flushable items in the wastewater network.

“Blockages, such as this one, costs money to fix, puts strain on our teams and is so easily preventable by only flushing the 3-Ps – Poo, Pee and (toilet) Paper” Steve says.

“They cause major impacts to our network. They prevent the pipes from functioning correctly and can cause wastewater overflows that end up in and around our environment.”

Work to identify the cause of cloudy stormwater near BP on SH2 started on Friday 24 September. It was quickly identified that the stormwater had been contaminated by a broken wastewater pipe from Tamworth Crescent, Newlands.

While the pipe was repaired by Sunday, wastewater continued to leak down from further up the gully due to the blockage.

“The blockage in the pipe wasn’t easy to access,” says Steve. “We had to use specialist abseiling teams to survey the pipe and had sucker trucks onsite from when the issue was identified to capture the contaminated water in the stream. Overall, it was 6 days before we were able to restore the pipe and leave the site.

“While we expect to see the occasional breaks and blocks in our network, we implore people to use common sense when it comes to what we use the wastewater system for.

“Pipes exist to transport the 3 waters – drinking, waste and stormwater. They’re not built to handle rags, fats and oils, nappies or other pipes.”

Wellington.Scoop – September 29
Wellington Water this morning reported a wastewater overflow on SH58 at Paremata. Its crews were sent to 51 Paremata Road, on the State Highway.

At 3pm, the crews were still onsite managing the wastewater overflow.

They had contained the flow, but were still working to clear the blockage.

There were also water outages in Korokoro and Papakowhai this morning. Forty Korokoro homes and 42 Papakowhai homes were without water. Repairs were expected to take four hours in Korokoro but only one hour in Papakowhai.

On State Highway 1, Wellington Water crews have been preparing to replace the Paremata Wastewater Pipe which burst in July. Throughout August, they have been investigating location options for the new section of pipe.

They have:

Had an ecologist on site to review the vegetated area in the median strip.
Completed an archaeological study.
Completed a topographical survey which involves investigating ground levels, above-ground structure/s and state highway lane-edge markings.
Completed a ground penetrating radar survey to locate utilities.
Completed a camera survey of the existing wastewater main.
Completed ground investigations to confirm geotechnical conditions and locate existing services.

This work will help complete the design and start construction.

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