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Treated water goes to waste as Sunningdale runs dry

Residents do their laundry using water from a burst pipe along Herbert Hick Avenue in Sunningdale Harare yesterday. — Picture Justin Mutenda

Blessings Chidakwa

Municipal Reporter

Harare City Council has been losing thousands of cubic metres of treated water in Sunningdale suburb over the past days following the burst of about three mains water pipes in the area with residents spending nearly a week without supplies.

Yesterday water was flowing all over the place in Sunningdale 1 and 2, with the most visible flow from leaks along Ardbennie road.

The area was almost hive of activity as desperate women were seen doing laundry in the streets using the flowing water while a handful of people were seen carrying water containers and fetching water flowing in the streets.

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Some kids were also observed y swimming along Philipps Circle in the middle of the road where the water was dammed by clogged drains.

One burst pipe was at the gate of 22, Herbert Hick Avenue.

A tenant at the place who preferred to be only identified as Mr Chaminuka said the pipe burst on Saturday.

“We had perennial water challenges in the area of late, but the situation was worsened when a worn pipe that has not been replaced for years burst in front of the gate.

“It has been a nightmare here and our neighbours as the water was flowing inside our houses.

“Imagine l cannot access the gate using my vehicle as water is pooled right at its middle,” he said.

Another resident, Miss Otilia Makoni said the perennial water shortages over the past few days were forcing her to fetch unprotected water. “We had no water for almost a week now and l had to walk some few kilometres from Ardbennie road to Herbert Hick Avenue to fetch water for basic needs such as bathing and cooking,” she said.

Around lunchtime, Harare City Council officials had managed to close the line feeding the burst pipe at Hebert Hick Avenue.

One of the workers told residents that there was no hope that water supplies would be restored anytime soon.

“As it stands we do not have the material required to replace or repair the burst pipe and residents feeding from the line may likely go for more days without water,” said the worker.

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Harare City Council has over the years been losing more than half of its treated water due to leaks.

HERALD