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Valve thieves leave 200,000 without water

Rishi Joseph, left, and Ramesh Ramkisson

Close to 200,000 residents in Central and South Trinidad were without water Monday after approximately three million of gallons of potable water was lost due to the theft of a Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) air valve from the utility’s Caroni/South transmission main, Chaguanas.This was confirmed yesterday by Ellen Lewis, general manager, corporate communications at WASA. She explained that the air valve was used to remove “air locks” from the system to facilitate “smooth transmission of water. “Scrap iron and metal thieves removed an eight-inch air valve directly off the 54-inch Caroni/South transmission main, in the vicinity of Perseverance, Chaguanas,” she said. Police investigations were underway and WASA was urging scrap and metal dealers to desist from “interfering with or stealing the utility’s pipeline infrastructure.” The affected transmission main transmits 43 million gallons of water a day and is the largest in the network, Lewis said.

She added that while “full normalisation in supply will take place over a 24-hour period,” due to the system of water scheduling and the remoteness of some communities at the extremities of the system, there may be some delay in the completion of repairs. Lewis said: “There are some areas that will get water immediately, based on where you are, but generally speaking, everybody will have their water restored within a 24-hour period. “Once customers are not getting the supply within that period we encourage our consumers to call us. “Truck-borne water is always an option in the absence of water being delivered to you via the pipeline system.”

Areas affected are:

Claxton Bay, Esperance, Macaulay, Debe, Caratal, Penal, Hermitage, Woodland, Soledad, South Oropouche, Union Road, Rousillac, San Fernando proper and environs, La Brea, Gulf View, Sobo, Duncan Village, Vance River, Pleasantville, Vessigny, Union Hall, Avocat, La Romaine, Fyzabad, Palmiste, Siparia, Sunkist, Quarry Village, Phillipine, Santa Flora and Palo Seco.

Source Guardian

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