Northumbrian Water’s £66 million mains cleaning programme is moving into Newcastle city centre in mid August to continue to supply top quality tap water to its customers.
The essential work, which is being carried out by Morrison Utility Services, will begin on Monday August 11 and is expected to take up to seven weeks to complete.
Preparation works have been carried out during July on Claremont Road and Barras Bridge and these will now continue along to St Mary’s Place and John Dobson Street.
It will be necessary to have rolling lane closures for the work, starting at the junction of Claremont Road and Barras Bridge and moving along the highway to the junction of St Mary’s Place and College Street. Temporary three way traffic lights will also be in place at the junction of John Dobson Street and St Mary’s Place from Monday 18 August for up to three weeks.
Work on the water mains will be a combination of pipe cleaning and lining. Innovative technology called ice pigging will be used to speed up the cleaning of pipes which creates minimal disruption and achieves maximum cleaning distance.
Ice pigging involves isolating a section of pipe by turning off valves at each end. Water is then emptied to make room for slushy ice to be injected. Valves are re-opened and, as the water flows, pressure compacts the ice and it scrapes the pipe clean. The ice is then flushed from the main and the water is sampled before being put back into supply.
This cleaning method is much quicker and the water company can clean sections of pipe and return them to service in the space of a few hours. Some ice pigging can be done during the night which significantly reduces all forms of disruption to homes, commuters and businesses.
Richard Johnston, Northumbrian Water’s project manager said: “We appreciate that this is a highly traffic-sensitive area of the city centre and we want to make sure that road users are given the opportunity to plan their journey to avoid delay and we apologise in advance for any inconvenience.
“We’ve deliberately scheduled this work to be carried out over the summer holidays to minimise the disruption and we will do everything that we can to complete the work as quickly as possible.
“We’re working very closely with Newcastle City Council to make sure that the traffic management in place causes the least possible disruption however we do expect there to be some delay at busy times for which we apologise.”
Customers who require further information or require assistance during this work should call Northumbrian Water’s customer centre on 0345 717 1100, visit www.themainevent-nwl.co.uk or follow @nwater_care and @NorthumbrianH2O on twitter.
Northumbrian Water and Morrison Utility Services will not need to gain access into customers’ homes while this work is carried out and residents should be vigilant of bogus callers posing as officials from the water company and their contractor.
For further information contact Stef Johnson on 0191 301 5325.