Crumbling Thames Water Infrastructure Brings Chiswick to a Halt

Spate of burst pipes causing traffic chaos

Serious congestion on the A4 by Sutton Court Road this Friday evening

January 21, 2023

Chiswick has been seeing exceptionally high levels of traffic delays over the past few days as burst water pipes forced road and lane closures.

Just when residents thought that lane closures on the A4 were over and more normal conditions would resume, a Thames Water pipe near the junction with Sutton Court Road works reportedly burst.

This has required the westbound carriageway to be reduced to a single lane a reduction similar to those that caused congestion earlier due to the repair works on the Cromwell Road Rail Bridge.

Ironically, the same section of the A4 was due to be closed for resurfacing works but it had to be postponed due to bad weather.

A few days after problems on the A4 began, a large pipe sprung a leak on Thursday on Bath Road near the Tabard pub requiring the closure of this road and the diversion of traffic onto other local streets.

The combination of the two incidents has resulted in almost constant traffic jams during the day with Chiswick High Road being highly congested well into Friday evening. Tailbacks on the A4 are reaching back to Earl’s Court.

Thames Water is also due to carry out sewer cleaning works at the junction of Sutton Lane North and Chiswick High Road this Sunday night which will mean there will be no access to Sutton Lane North from the High Road from 10pm to 5pm the following morning..

Westbound traffic will be diverted via Chiswick High Road, Burlington Road, Wellesley Road and eastbound traffic would be diverted via Chiswick High Road and Heathfield Terrace.

There is also a reported leak at the junction of Gunnersbury Lane and Acton High Street which is set to restrict traffic until 25 January according to the latest information.

Thames Water did not reply to our request for information about when the repairs would be finished but other sources suggest that the A4 will fully reopen on Monday (23 January) and Bath Road will reopen on Wednesday (25 January).

An engineer who lives in the local area said, “Thames Water do have a programme of replacement of at-risk pipes from the aging network and they monitor their network to detect problem areas, but this has been put back by Covid and difficulties in getting qualified staff. My suspicion is that during the A4 works they were constrained from early interventions in Chiswick due to concerns about worsening already bad traffic conditions and problems they thought would not materialise immediately, occurred due to the rapid shifts between very cold and unseasonably mild weather which caused the bursts.”

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