Pipeholes may replace manholes in near future

Roadside manholes, which serve as an access point to clear clogged underground drains, may be a thing of the past as the State government is actively considering the recommendation of an expert panel to replace them with a much smaller and advanced “pipeholes.”

In its recommendation to the State government, the Task Force for Quality Assurance in Public Constructions, headed by civil engineering expert C S Vishwanath, has pointed out that the advent of jetting machines has rendered the manholes obsolete.

Therefore, manholes could be easily replaced by pipeholes in select areas of the City in a phased manner. They have recommended that by altering the brick structure and collar of a manhole, a two-foot-diameter circular manhole could be converted into a 50 mm pipehole, with a security lid.

“Manholes were required when clogged drains required manual cleaning. But, today with the jetting machine technology, a clogged drain can be cleared in minutes through the pipeholes. The security lid of the pipehole will come with an inbuilt lock which can be opened only by authorised persons,” Task Force Member Secretary I Ravindranath told Deccan Herald.

The move, the Task Force has stated, would put an end to the dangers posed by manholes with missing lids.

Recently, Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar had asked the Task Force to work with Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) and work out the feasibility of implementing the concept in some areas.

Ravindranath said BWSSB officials had sought certain clarifications. “We are now building a prototype that will demonstrate the utility of the pipehole on a trial stretch. It would take us a few more days to complete the prototype, following which we will have a meeting with BWSSB officials again,” he said.

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