Workers fix a broken section of a pipe that supplies water for more than 70,000 families in Hanoi on June 18. Photo: Le Quan
A VND1.5-trillion (US$70.26 million) pipeline that supplies water to more than 70,000 families in Hanoi broke for the seventh time in two years due to the poor quality of construction materials.
Nguyen Van Ton, general director of Vinaconex Corporation, which manages the pipeline, told the press that a section of the pipeline in Thach That District broke on Tuesday night, creating a hole that was some 20-30 centimeters wide.
The problem was “almost” fixed on Wednesday and water was expected to be totally restored later that day, he said.
The pipeline began bringing clean water from the Da River Water Factory in the northern province of Hoa Binh to families in six Hanoi districts (including Hoang Mai and Cau Giay) in 2008.
It broke the first time in February 2012; three similar breakdowns were reported this year alone--two in April alone.
According to Ton, his company has yet to identify if the latest accident was caused by the pipe being overloaded or its poor quality.
In the meantime, Hoang Hai, deputy chief of the State Authority for Construction Quality Inspection under the Ministry of Construction, said the pipe has continuously broken down due to its poor quality and construction.
He said the Vietnam Institute for Building Science and Technology and the Vietnam Institute for Building Materials (both under the ministry) launched an inspection and found that many portions of the fiber-reinforced composite pipe had deteriorated.
They also found that no protective layers or insulation were employed to prevent the pipe from being affected by external obstacles like rocks.
Hai said the Vinaconex Corporation and the project’s consultant, contractor, as well as the pipe producer (most of which were Vinaconex subsidiaries) will have to take responsibility for the problems.
The pipe’s current capacity is 600,000 cubic meters per day and was expected to increase to 1.2 cubic meters in 2020.
Hanoi authorities have recently ordered Vinaconex to build another 10 kilometer pipe to help take over for the troubled pipeline.
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