Tag Archives: India

Road cave-in caused by corrosion in slab

MUMBAI: The Andheri (E) road cave-in on Tuesday was caused by corrosion of steel in a slab, it has been revealed prima facie.

Consultant D S Joshi, who made the submission to the BMC, told TOI that material from the site had been sent for laboratory tests to ascertain the reasons for the corrosion. “I would be able to give the exact reasons once the report is available. It would take about a week,” he added.

Meanwhile, the BMC on Wednesday decided to conduct an audit of all concrete slabs over nullahs across the city.

The 30-ft road in Gundavali village has two lanes on either side of a 20-ft-wide nullah. The road was built by laying slabs atop portions of the nullah in 1985.

N V Merani, chairman of the Standing Technical Advisory Committee (STAC), said the nullah’s water could have eroded the earth below the slabs. “The other possible reasons could be lack of maintainance or poor quality,” he said, adding that laboratory results could only shed light on the extent of loss of strength due to corrosion and not the reasons behind the same.

“This can be found out only through close inspection of the corroded section by an experienced engineer,” he said.

Two weeks ago, the STAC had raised the issue of old civic bridges with the BMC. There are 253 bridges in the city; of these, 102 are over waterways, 17 are flyovers, 41 road overbridges, 93 foot over-bridges and subways.

“We did a study of 34 old bridges three years ago. By now, they should have been repaired or reconstructed. But nothing has moved,” said Merani.

The STAC had recommended that a separate chief engineer be appointed to exclusively monitor bridges and concrete roads. The BMC has created a post not filled it up. “The MMRDA is constructing flyovers and roads and handing them over to the BMC. The corporation needs to appoint a person to that post. We have even suggested that if they cannot promote an engineer, they can get someone on deputation. But decisions in the BMC are ad-hoc,” he said.

SOURCE: http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-05-24/mumbai/31839803_1_bmc-slabs-bridges

Indian nuclear reactor exposed to risk of corrosion

The stagnant coolant water in the reactor vessel and pipes in the first unit of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KNPP) is giving sleepless nights to scientists and engineers who say the risk of damage to the equipment is increasing each day.

“Water has to be circulating so that the components are not exposed to the risk of corrosion. However, the quality of stagnant water will deteriorate over a period of time, which in turn poses a risk to the reactor components like the primary pipes and the reactor vessel,” said a KNPP official preferring anonymity.

Project work since October has come to a standstill with intensifying protests by villagers on grounds of safety. Roads have been blocked and the local administration has advised the KNPP staff to sit tight inside their homes, fearing violence.

“It is the demineralised water – water in pure form – which is fed into the systems. However, to maintain its purity the water should be circulated as stagnant water will interact with the metal surface and quality will change,” said K S Parthasarathy, former chairman of Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB).

Parthasarathy said there would be a water chemistry group to look at the quality of water used in reactors.

“Water is a hostile fluid. It is not desirable to have stagnant water inside a reactor. However, it is not a serious issue as the number of days that the water remains stagnant is comparatively low,” Parthasarathy added.

“Maintaining the purity of stagnant water is an issue that is facing us. We are not able to check the chemistry of the water that is inside the power plant,” said an NPCIL official.

The helpless officials confined to their homes for nearly a month are hoping that there is no major damage to the reactor components resulting in further delays to the project.

“The systems cannot be stopped and restarted. Decommissioning a reactor is different as one need not bother about the damages the systems would undergo after the plant is stopped,” said the official, who spoke demanding anonymity.

On September 22, the Tamil Nadu government passed a resolution urging Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Central government to halt work at Kudankulam till the fear of the people were allayed.

SOURCE: http://ibnlive.in.com/news/kudankulam-reactor-exposed-to-risk-of-corrosion/200806-3.html

Indian oil pipelines under tight surveillance

INDIA: Oil companies in Kochi have upped their surveillance to monitor the pipelines which pass underground through the city carrying highly inflammable oil products.

Apart from deploying foot patrol teams, the companies have roped in the support of local residents who live near the pipe lines to strengthen the monitoring activities.

“Certain pipe lines are of 12 km long. We don’t reveal the actual route map as it is a matter of national security. Though there are no specific threats to the oil pipelines, we have spruced up surveillance considering the changing security scenario,” said official sources in Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) and Indian Oil Corporation (IOC).

The sources said that the patrolling teams walk all along the route on shift basis to check for any suspected activities. “We have implemented a system in which the security personnel of the oil companies frequently interact with the residents living adjacent to the pipelines. We will also train them to report suspected activities or incidents which they notice in the area,” the sources said.

The companies have also implemented state-of-the-art systems to monitor the pipe lines from a control room in the refineries. “We have cathodic protection systems and other devices to check the safety of the pipe lines. Any variation in the pressure will be immediately known at the control room,” the sources added.

Kochi City Police Commissioner M R Ajith Kumar said that though the oil companies have their own mechanism to monitor the pipelines, the city police also conduct routine surveillance on its own. “We also undertake round the clock monitoring of the areas through which the pipe lines pass,” the Commissioner said.

SOURCE: http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-09-17/kochi/30168731_1_pipelines-oil-companies-surveillance