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Unit 1 back in action


SHERIA BRATHWAITE

Unit 1 back in action

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Businesses operating on the South Coast and residents there should be getting more relief following some improvements to the Bridgetown Sewage Treatment Plant.

Yesterday, Processing Unit 1 was operating again after being out of service for the past two years.

Some of the sewage from the South Coast plant had been piped to the Bridgetown plant but when Unit 1 became faulty, it was diverted.

Minister of Energy and Water Resources Wilfred Abrahams deemed the $400 000 emergency fix at the plant a success.

“When we started to clean out the tank, everything that could be wrong was wrong . . . . It wasn’t simply a clean and a pretty-up,” he said.

“In the last three weeks, we have managed to entirely rebuild this Processing Unit to the point where, unless something really unforeseen happens, we don’t think we have to look back at this unit for another 15 years, with the exception of routine maintenance.

“When we started the works, this tank was down entirely and the other tank, which represented half of the processing power, was operating at less than a quarter capacity.

“Right now, we have one fully functioning tank, which is half capacity of the plant, and we are taking the other one offline very shortly to do the fix on that as well. When we finish that one, we expect to be at 100 per cent.”

Abrahams and general manager of the Barbados Water Authority, Keithroy Halliday, thanked the workers who they said went the extra mile to get the task completed.

Abrahams said some of the parts needed to finish the job were not readily available, and the engineering and welding teams had to utilise what material was at their disposal to find solutions.

It took five skip trucks, two cranes, two Bobcats, a hazmat (hazardous materials) team of eight men, two paramedics and a team of health and safety officers to undertake the job.

About 758 cubic metres of sludge were removed from the Processing Unit and disposed in a specially created spot at the Mangrove Landfill.

Now back in operation, Unit 1 would hold about a million gallons of wastewater, which would be treated and disposed of as effluent.

The project, which saw the removal of debris, bush and plants from the unit; repair and re-installation of a 35-foot, three-ton bridge; the cleaning, repair and replacement of pipes and diffusers; clearing of valves and the repair of a 12-inch airline, was supposed to have taken two weeks but due to rainfall last week was delayed by a few days. (SB)

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