You are here: Home - Household Bills - News -

Water companies ‘let customers down’ during ‘Beast from the East’

Written by:
Some of the UK’s major water companies have been criticised for “causing significant hardship” to customers during this year’s 'Beast from the East'.

Water regulator, Ofwat, said more than 200,000 customers did not have water supply for more than four hours and tens of thousands were left without supply for days during the period of cold weather in late February and early March.

In its review into how water companies responded to the cold snap, Ofwat identified failings such as poor preparation and planning, limited or inaccurate data, and poor communication with customers.

Ofwat has asked four water companies – Thames Water, Severn Trent, Southern Water and South East Water – to submit a detailed, externally audited, action plan setting out how they are addressing the issues identified.

Ofwat chief executive, Rachel Fletcher, said: “The freeze and rapid thaw earlier this year was forecast and was not unprecedented. A number of water companies showed what can be done to serve customers in the face of bad weather. But too many companies were caught off guard and let people down, causing real hardship as a result. Our report shows there is no excuse for this level of failure.

“Four companies have three months to satisfy us that they will be ready to perform at the level customers deserve the next time there is bad weather. We will take action if they don’t rise to this challenge. We expect every water company to take action on the back of this review and the industry as a whole to transform how it works together in situations like these.

“Water is an essential service. Water companies must be prepared for whatever the weather brings.”

Related Posts

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

Coronavirus and your finances: what help can you get?

News and updates on everything to do with coronavirus and your personal finances.

Everything you need to know about being furloughed

If you’ve been ‘furloughed’ by your company, here’s what it means…

The savings accounts paying the most interest

If one of your jobs this month is to get your finances in order, moving your savings to a higher paying deal i...

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
EU referendem
Brexit trade barriers could cost households up to £1k each

Depending on which Brexit scenario is adopted, households could face increased costs of nearly £1,000 a year.