Hyderabad: Trash floating on the Hussainsagar played spoilsport during the Hyderabad Sailing Week races on Friday afternoon. The participants complained about the litter slowing down boat speeds, which was a major drawback in the competition.
Vir Menon, 19, a participant, said, “Following the heavy spell of rain on Thursday night, the water flowing into the lake carried a lot of trash, especially plastic bags and bottles. This turned out to be a hurdle for over 220 boats. There was plastic floating under the surface, 4-5 feet deep. This hit the bottom of the boats, trash was found stuck and that slowed down the speed.”
The event took off on July 4 with 200-plus participants. The sailing week will come to an end on Saturday. Mahesh Ramachandram, an Arjuna awardee who was part of the race, testified, “Friday was the first day we saw trash in such large quantity. A massive cleaning operation is needed. It was beyond the participants to avoid the trash, and some boats got stuck. The focus shifted from reaching the mark to negotiating the plastic. Since the water is murky green, identifying waste was a difficult task. I saw 4-5 boats that hit the plastic and got stuck for a long time.”
The race began around 2 pm on Friday and lasted an hour. The participants who had to sail for four miles, informed the organisers about the issue.