Ghana

GWCL replaces biggest pipeline after 50 years over corrosion

Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) has begun replacement of the biggest pipe line in the country which is 42 inch in diameter laid over 50 years ago.

The 53-kilometre long pipeline spans from its treatment station at Kpong to its booster station at Tema often experiences leakages due to excessive corrosion.

This has led to a huge loss of treated water leading to shortages in some areas and requires about $300m to replace.

However, due to financial constraints, GWCL is taking this project in phases.

The company through its troubleshooting has identified about 2 kilometres of its line which needs urgent attention at a cost of GH¢4m to improve efficiency.

Public Relations Manager for GWCL, Stanley Martey disclosed this after inspecting the progress of work at Gbetsile Junction No.2 in the Kpone-Katamanso Municipality.

“Since the company does not have the financial muscle to change the several kilometres of damaged pipeline, it will be done as and when we have funds,” he said.

According to him, due to the maintenance, communities relying on Kpong for water might go some days without water, however, supply will be restored once works are completed on the pipeline.

Barring any technical hitch or bad weather, the team is expected to finish work on 120 metres of the transmission before the weekend.

“The team is working on 120 metres of the transmission line and this will be repeated until 2 kilometres of the weak line is covered,” he said

Before coming to site, we had all the necessary logistics, machines, personnel among other things needed for this all-important work ready,” he indicated.

Despite the level of corrosion of these lines, Mr Martey said, several steps are taken by the quality assurance team which ensures the safety of consumers is not compromised.

Meanwhile, Regional Chief Manager, ATMA Production, Ing. Charles A. Brobbey supervising the work said it is progressing steadily.

“You realize it rained on Tuesday when work commenced but we are putting in much effort to finish according to schedule.”

Asked why the company is using steel pipes for the replacement, he maintained the best type for this work should have been High-Density Polyethylene Pipe(HDPE).

However, this type of pipe is not produced in the country and efforts to get a product to close HDPE did not work out due to the Covid-19 pandemic among other factors.

“We are doing the necessary coating on the inside, protection on the outside and wrap it,” Ing. Brobbey revealed.

Meanwhile, Ing. Charles A. Brobbey is unhappy with the level of encroachment along the route of their pipelines and warns that GWCL company will be forced to pull down any structure if the need be.

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