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Why Delhi gets that sinking feeling...

Even as civic agencies are yet to repair potholed roads in the city, there might be many more just about to crumble.

delhi Updated: Sep 27, 2011 00:28 IST
Hamari Jamatia

Even as civic agencies are yet to repair potholed roads in the city, there might be many more just about to crumble. Despite nearly 60 roads witnessing cave-ins last year, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) are yet to come up with a solution.

According to them, Delhi roads are built on top of water and sewer pipelines, which leads to leakages and corrodes them, leading to collapses.

Adding to their woes is trenchless technology — that has been leading to cave-ins in both MCD and NDMC areas, especially during monsoon season.

The new technology was brought in a few years ago to install cables and pipes without digging up roads physically. Power discoms and telephone agencies use it to lay their cables with minimum disruption of traffic.

However, engineers sometimes fail to account for the network of sewage and water pipes running underneath the roads.
While boring, they end up puncturing pipes, the leakages from which cause cave-ins.

Significantly, both the civic bodies have no idea as to which roads are potentially hazardous, as it is not possible to tell from the surface if they are getting corroded underneath.

When a sewage pipe or a water pipe gets punctured, it starts leaking and after a few months, it gives in to the pressure and bursts.

Amit Prasad, NDMC spokesperson said no technology could be used to determine which roads can see a cave-in. “There is no technology which can tell which roads could see a possible collapse,” he said.