Hanoians infuriated after water pipeline bursts for 19th time

By Ba Do   September 14, 2016 | 10:25 pm PT
70,000 households lose access to water again after the Da River pipeline burst yesterday.

The Da River pipeline burst yesterday, flooding the surrounding area for the 19th time since it was opened, according to a statement made by Vinconex, the project's investor.

The rupture forced the company to cut water to 70,000 households. The company claimed that the rupture and subsequent repairs all took place in a single evening.

The pipe has burst 19 times since it came online in 2009 leading to the loss of an estimated 1.5 million cubic meters of water.

An affected resident named Hanh told VnExpress: “The pipeline has broken so many times that my family has bought five 20-liter plastic cans to fetch water from elsewhere. The company never notifies us so some households have burned out their electric pumps trying to draw water from empty tanks.”

Massive ruptures on the brittle pipeline have been attributed to substandard pipes Vinaconex purchased from a Chinese contractor.

A police investigation revealed that 13 Vinaconex executives had violated construction and investment regulations. Criminal charges were later dropped against five of the company's executives since they were first-time offenders with good personal records. The rest are awaiting trial.

The Da River water pipeline project was launched in 2004 and divided into two phases. The first phase of the project supplies 300,000 cubic meters of water to the capital every day.

The second phase kicked off last October and was supposed to double the total capacity to 600,000 cubic meters.

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