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Flash flood caused by burst pipe outside University of Manchester forces closure of Oxford Road and Student Union

  •  Burst water pipe leads to chaos near University
  • Oxford Road closed off due to major damage
  • United Utilities 'working round the clock' to repair damage
  • Images and video footage by Megan Barlow

 

United Utilities says it is working round the clock to repair damage caused by a flash flood near the University of Manchester and reopen Oxford Road.

A burst water main early on Tuesday morning saw a large area of Oxford Road deluged, with both the university and the Student Union having to close buildings due to flood damage caused by a burst pipe.

A number of university buildings, including the library, had to be temporarily closed. The Academy music venue was also closed.

Flooding, Oxford Road, University of Manchester, United Utilities
Oxford Road was closed off for repair work
Flooding, Oxford Road, University of Manchester, United Utilities
Damage caused by the burst pipe  Image: GMFRS

A spokesperson for United Utilities told NQ: “Water pipes can burst for a number of reasons and it’s not always possible to say. It could be due to constant vibrations of the ground due to traffic on the road above.

"Or sometimes after a prolonged period of dry and cold weather, the ground can expand or contract which puts pressure on pipe joints and causes a burst.”

They said repairs could take up to a week to complete.

  • Diversions are in place for buses along Oxford Road
Flooding, Oxford Road, University of Manchester, United Utilities
Work underway to repair the burst pipe

 

The Student Union was forced to close for the majority of the day on Wednesday and welcome events for freshers were cancelled until mid-afternoon.

United Utilities said repairs were due to be completed yesterday (Thursday) and water supplies due to be fully restored.

Flooding, Oxford Road, University of Manchester, United Utilities
The Student Union building was closed for a number of hours

Asked how long road repairs would take, they added: "We are in discussions with the council highways department about the wider repairs to the roads and that they are planning to work extended hours, seven days-a-week, to get the damage repaired as soon as possible so that the road can be reopened.

"We are working closely with the site managers to help with the clean-up and get things back to normal as soon as possible.”

Flooding, Oxford Road, University of Manchester, United Utilities
United Utilities at the scene Images by Megan Barlow
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