Ala Wai pipe should handle waste-water emergencies
Contractors submerged a 5,000-foot-long pipe in the Ala Wai Canal yesterday to serve as an emergency bypass for waste water.
Contractors from Healy Tibbitts Builders Inc. started submerging the pipe at 8:05 a.m. Work was completed 7 1/2 hours later.
Eldon Franklin, waste-water branch chief of the city Department of Design and Construction, said the pipe will be at least three feet below the water's surface of the canal's shallowest areas.
The city will use the bypass pipe, made of high-density polyethylene, temporarily until a new pressurized main is installed to replace the one that ruptured in March, sending 48 millions of gallons of raw sewage into the canal.
It was the city's largest sewage spill.
The spill prompted the closure of nearby beaches and surf spots.
Repairs were made to the ruptured 42-inch aged pressurized sewer line following the break.
Yesterday, about 360,000 gallons of water was pumped into the pipe to submerge it. Concrete weights were used to anchor it.
Officials said they had received approval from state and federal agencies to submerge the pipe, which is expected to be used for at least five years before a new force main is installed.
Contractors will hook up the bypass pipe to lines in Waikiki.
In August the city plans to start the second phase of the $20 million project that will include a method called "microtunneling" to install pipelines under the ground.