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The Cutzamala water system pipeline, where a leak affected five million people. The Cutzamala water system pipeline, where a leak affected five million people.

Leak leaves 5 million without running water

Rupture in 99-inch pipeline affects 11 México state municipalities

More than five million people in 11 municipalities on the outskirts of greater Mexico City have been without water for more than two days due to a leak in the region’s distribution system.

A rupture in a 99-inch pipe carrying water from the Cutzamala system through a rural zone of the municipality of Naucalpan is to blame.

The problem was first detected Wednesday and had been fully repaired by early this afternoon but it is likely to be late tonight before the restored supply begins to reach people’s homes. All the affected municipalities are located in the state of México.

A spokesman for the state’s water commission said yesterday afternoon that they were working hard to restore the water supply to homes as soon as possible, while México state Public Works Secretary Alejandro Fernández said today that 45 workers had labored through the night to resolve the issue.

Around one million liters of water was trucked into the municipality of Naucalpan alone to alleviate the scarcity but it was still not enough to fully meet the demand.

The newspaper El Universal spoke to several of the affected residents about the situation they were facing.

“We only have a garrafón [large container] of bought water . . . we have a pile of dirty dishes so we’ve been using the same cup to drink coffee since yesterday,” said one woman, adding that she was concerned about the smell emanating from her bathrooms.

“Some of us are sick and the taps are dry,” complained one victim while others said that they didn’t even have water to wash themselves.

“The water in the tanks is running out . . . we’re taking care of the water as much as we can because we don’t know how many more days we’re going to be without supply,” another concerned resident said.

The 11 affected municipalities are Atizapán de Zaragoza, Coacalco, Cuatitlán Izcalli, Ecatepec, Huixquilucan, Naucalpan, Nezahualcóyotl, Nicolás Romero, Tecámac, Tlalnepantla and Tultitlán.

Source: El Universal (sp), Milenio (sp), El Sol del Centro (sp)

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