Chennai Metrowater mulls over launch of slot booking

Booking a water tanker online through ‘Dial for Water’ service has become a hassle for many city residents. As an effort to streamline booking and provide faster delivery, Chennai Metrowater is mulling over launching a slot booking system.

At present, the water agency operates nearly 8,300 tanker trips daily. Of this, about 3,000 trips are being operated for payment every day. As groundwater levels in the city dipped to an average of 8 m below ground level in April, residents have turned to Metrowater tankers to fulfill their needs. While water table levels plummeted to the lowest of 9.52 m in the Ambattur zone, groundwater levels dipped to 7.8 m and 7.2 m in zones such as Kodambakkam and Adyar in April.

Residents complain the wait for a tanker load could extend up to 25 days. V.S. Jayaraman, a resident of T. Nagar, said new restrictions had been implemented for consumers in multistoreyed buildings to book a tanker online. Residents have to declare the number of dwelling units in their apartment and they would be supplied only through 9,000 litre-capacity tankers.“Many multistoreyed apartments may not have the capacity to hold 9,000 litres. This would further lead to unavailability of water to residents in apartments,” he said.

Backlog of delivery

Metrowater officials said there was no restriction on the number of tanker bookings. But there has been a backlog of deliveries, as bookings are more than the handling capacity of a particular area.

Slot booking would help streamline bookings and reduce cancellations. Residents can choose the date of delivery from the slots available and can also make online payment for the tanker load. There are also plans to levy cancellation charges.

Nearly 750 lorries are engaged in water supply and this will be increased to 900 lorries. On restrictions for multistoreyed buildings, officials said though 100 mini lorries were added to the fleet of lorries with a capacity of 6,000 l, there were not adequate number of lorries for supply.

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