Isle of Dogs road floods for eighth time in six years
Alastair Lockhart, Local Democracy Reporter
- Credit: Google
Isle of Dogs residents were left fuming at the weekend after a popular bus route was left flooded for the eighth time in just six years.
Manchester Road was flooded after pipes burst on Saturday, October 9, next to George Green’s School on the street.
The flood left locals facing long diversions and disruption on the D7 and 134 bus services in the area.
Thames Water apologised to residents for the disruption caused by the pipe burst, which is one of a series of similar incidents stretching back to February 2015.
In November and September last year, flooding saw traffic blocked on a nearby stretch of the same road, and five similar incidents have been reported in recent years.
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The water supply to most of the Isle of Dogs is funnelled in through Victorian-era cast iron pipes – many of which are over a hundred years old.
Following the sixth water pipe break on Manchester Road in September 2018, a spokesperson for Thames Water said: “We recognise that the mains in Manchester Road have experienced a number of failures over the last few years and understand the disruption this has caused locally.
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“We have undertaken a lot of work to improve water circulation around the Isle of Dogs in recent years.
“We therefore do not have current plans to replace these pipes, but will continue to monitor their performance.”
Cllr Andrew Wood criticised this course of action, and accused Thames Water and the council of not acting fast enough to replace the area’s ageing infrastructure.
Cllr Wood believes the former must now "dig up the road and replace the whole section of cast iron water pipe with plastic".
He said: "After break six Thames Water said they would not do this but would monitor its performance. I have asked them again to do this.
"Tower Hamlets Council need to reprofile the pedestrian crossings so that they have smoother entrances and exits for heavy vehicles to avoid the slamming that causes these breaks, they have partially done this but as these are outside a secondary school we still need to slow down vehicles.”
Of this latest incident, a spokesperson for Thames Water said: “We’re really sorry for the disruption and inconvenience this emergency work has caused.
“Our engineers successfully repaired the leaking water pipe on Saturday, but the diversion will remain in place until the road has been safely re-surfaced.”
The Local Democracy Reporting Service contacted Tower Hamlets Council for comment.