Thursday, 16 September 2021

Thames Water ignore residents plea to fix leak

A WATER leak in a Henley street was not repaired for nine days after it was first reported

A WATER leak in a Henley street was not repaired for nine days after it was first reported.

Residents of Gainsborough Hill first complained to Thames Water on July 29 but no action was taken until last Friday.

The leak began as a small trickle that bubbled up beneath a crack in the middle of the street.

Householders say they were told it would be fixed within two or three days but nothing was done and the problem worsened as water began flowing from other spots and at higher pressure.

After several days, a large pothole appeared around the leak where it had weakened the asphalt and a trail of dirt appeared down the hill as the water brought up soil from under the surface.

Huseyn Djemil, 52, whose house is opposite the affected area, said he had reported the leak several times.

He said: ?When I first saw this trail of water in the road I thought someone had been washing their car. I found out my neighbour had already reported it and it was supposed to be fixed. I sent a video to Thames Water on Twitter and they said they would pass it on to the relevant team.

?I don?t know why there was such a delay but there wasn?t any communication with us.

?A Thames Water engineer had a quick look but that?s all we?re aware of. It was gushing out 24 hours a day and I?m sure Thames Water would give us short shrift if we were being that wasteful.?

Mr Djemil said there had been similar leaks on the Gainsborough estate over the past year, including another near his house a month ago. He said: ?The last one took a few days for them to come out but there wasn?t too much damage to the road because they were quicker.

?Their repairs are always done to a high standard but leaks seem to spring up in new areas all the time.

?Someone at their head office needs to take a step back and do something to get to the root of the problem.?

In 2013, the company failed to fix a leak in Marmion Road for more than six weeks.

The year before that, it took 35 hours to fix a burst pipe in Belle Vue Road. Gardens in that street and St Andrew?s Road were flooded and residents built makeshift dams to stem the flow.

Thames Water said it received 200 reports of leaks every day across its 20,000-mile network and these were dealt with in order of priority.

A spokesman said: ?We know customers want lower leakage, which is why it is a top priority in our business plan, and we are sorry for the frustration this caused.

?Leakage is currently at its lowest level ever, down a third since its peak in 2004, but the hard work continues.?

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