Abandoned water pipes by a previous contractor and a farmer resisting eviction from the pipeline route are some of the challenges the Masama 100km pipeline project is currently encountering.
But the company remains upbeat about its mission and determination to have laid the last pipes by end of next month.
According to Khato Civils Group brand architect, Neo Molefakgotla the company encountered the abandoned pipes on the route of their project. Molefakgotla added the process of removing the pipes left by a previous contractor is expected to be completed by December 15, 2020 while a farmer who was ordered to make way for the construction of the pipeline was yet to move. “The encroachment challenges have not been completely resolved. There is a team of highly capable individuals dealing with this matter, and I have total confidence this will be resolved soon,” Molefakgotla said.
“Meanwhile, we are trenching other places where we can trench whilst we are awaiting the relevant authorities to finalise the matter. We will go back to those areas once this matter has been resolved.” Despite the hitches, Molefakgotla was adamant that the company remained on course to deliver the last batches of the pipes to the site and have them laid by end of December, in accordance with their initial target they set for themselves despite the challenges brought by COVID-19 and other factors.
Still on the project, last week Khato Civils delivered eight brand
“It’s a case of adding to what is currently on site, to accelerate progress. Our initial plan was to bring about 13 of these machines on site and that is what we have been able to do. Previously, we were using hired excavators whilst we were waiting for the delivery of these new eight machines that arrived last weekend.”
According to Molefakgotla the company’s construction methodology allowed it to utilise a combination of trenchers and excavators in all the pipeline projects and this one was no exception.
“Utilising excavators was part of the strategy for this project from the beginning. The nature of water projects is such that you don’t always know what is below the surface. As you work, you have a better understanding of the environment and you make adjustments accordingly. The additional excavators are an adjustment. There are areas with very hard rock along the pipeline. There, we blast the rock and utilise excavators to take out the rocks.”
The group brand architect said contrary to speculation that the contractor may have lost some machinery to damages; none of the four trenchers have broken down, as they are regularly maintained and serviced throughout the project’s duration.