Severn Trent Water are working round the clock to fix the large water main in Harborne Lane in Selly Oak. They are track to have the work completed by the end of February at the latest.

Severn Trent Water has released the following statement:

As you can see from the photos, we’ve cut out and removed the broken piece of pipe, and we’ve now put in place and connected up the new piece.  There’s still a lot of work to go to complete the repair work – that pipe now has to be cleaned and disinfected to make sure it’s fit for your water to go through – after all, giving our customers a continuous supply of top quality water is our priority.

Once all of the pipe repair work is done, we can then start work to get Harborne Lane itself repaired, reopened and everything back to normal.  We’re still on track to have this all complete by the end of February at the latest.

We absolutely understand the frustrations of those affected by the burst and the subsequent road diversion, and we know it’s been going on for a long time, but we want to reassure everyone that we have been working hard on this constantly since the burst happened.

It may have looked like we weren’t doing much on site to fix this pipe for a good while, but we were in fact doing lots of work in and around the city.  We’ve had to come up with a way of fixing the pipe without affecting the water supply for the people of Birmingham.  This means we need to be able to move water around our network of pipes in a way that will allow us to switch off the pipe without affecting the water pressure and without causing any discolouration.

To make sure we could do this, we’ve checked all of the valves etc. that make up the network so that we were absolutely sure we could do the repair with the absolute minimum disruption.  This work did take quite a long time as there were over 500 separate checks to be carried out.

There’s a big hole where the burst pipe was and the road surface is damaged.  The pipe is actually 6m underneath here so you can see what a big job it is to fix it, but we’re getting on with it really well now.

It’s really important that we took the time to make sure we do this right – the last thing we want to do is cut off water supplies or cause discoloured water while we work.

Traffic Management

To fix the pipe, we will still need to keep part of the road closed, however we will keep one side of Harborne Lane open.

The other side, from the petrol station just before the junction with Quinton Road to the new roundabout at the junction of the A38, will need to stay closed until the pipe is fixed and everything is back to normal.

We know that this is really inconvenient and we can only say sorry for this, but please be reassured that we are working hard to get this pipe and the road fixed as quickly as possible.

As soon as we have an exact date for reopening the road, we will of course let people know, but we expect it to be no later than the end of February.