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Mock drill will check whether underpasses ready for rains

In August last year, the Hero Honda Chowk underpass was closed for more than 50 hours after the GMDA’s motor pumps had failed to drain the rainwater.

gurgaon Updated: May 05, 2019 01:57 IST
Kartik Kumar
Kartik Kumar
Gurugram
mock drill,underpass,rains
Last year, the Hero Honda Chowk underpass was closed for more than 50 hours after the GMDA’s motor pumps had failed to drain the rainwater.(HT File)

The Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) has decided conduct a mock drill at the five underpasses on Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway in the last week of May to check if their motor pumps are equipped to drain high volumes of water quickly during the monsoon and ensure the structure does not get inundated, officials said on Saturday.

In August last year, the Hero Honda Chowk underpass was closed for more than 50 hours after the GMDA’s motor pumps had failed to drain the rainwater. Once the electric panels of the motor pumps were submerged in rainwater, they stopped functioning entirely, and more than 50 million litres of rainwater had accumulated there.

In addition, during monsoon last year, rainwater often inundated the unidirectional Rajiv Chowk underpass as the level of the road leading towards the underpass and stormwater drains was not the same.

“Similar to last year in June where we filled the Hero Honda Chowk underpass with 70,000 litres of water during a mock drill, we will be filling all underpasses with a high volume of water with the help of fire tenders and subsequently drain it all out,” Lalit Arora, chief engineer of the GMDA, said.

Arora said this would help the GMDA assess if the motor pumps at all underpasses located at Rajiv Chowk, Iffco Chowk, Signature Towers, and Hero Honda Chowk are equipped to drain high volumes of rainwater, confirm if they are properly functioning, and estimate the time needed to drain out water.

IS Kashyap, assistant divisional fire safety officer, said that the fire department is yet to receive any official communication from the GMDA about the mock drill, but said that if summoned, fire tenders would be filled with treated water for the purpose.

“If the GMDA summons us for the drill, all fire tenders that are needed for the operation will be filled with treated water from sewage treatment plants (STPs) which is ideal for immediate use,” Kashyap said.

The development comes less than a week after the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), on the recommendation of the GMDA, decided to double the capacity of motor pumps at the Hero Honda Chowk underpass from 3,000 litres per minute to 6,000 litres per minute to ensure it is not flooded.

Work in this regard is expected to be completed by May 15, GMDA officials said.

Last year, officials had also discovered that two drains parallel to the underpass had not been connected to the Haryana Shahari Vikas Pradhikaran’s master drain. Officials said that they constructed a 600mm-wide and 200m-long pipeline from the underpass to the master drain near Sector 10 A to ensure rainwater does not flow towards the underpass.

In October last year, the unidirectional underpass at Rajiv Chowk near Medanta Hospital had been closed for two days as officials executed engineering changes at the road leading to the underpass to prevent the underpass from flooding during the monsoon.

A 10.5 metre portion of CH Bakhtawar Singh Road, the road leading to the underpass, was increased by two metres to ensure water does not flow into the underpass and rather towards the stormwater drains

First Published: May 05, 2019 01:57 IST