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Help sought as big freeze draws 20 million litres of water a day from Highland supplies (08/12/10)
Issued by Scottish Water
As Scottish Water staff battle the extreme weather conditions to maintain services to customers, an appeal is going out to people in theDingwall, Black Isle and Drumnadrochit areas to double-check their properties and land for leaks or burst pipes.
Scottish Water's treatment plants across the Highlands are making in total 20 million litres a day more than normal, suggesting a large number of burst pipes. Areas where this is giving concern are Dingwall and the Black Isle, and Drumnadrochit.
Scottish Water's Operations Manager for the Highlands, Simon Harrison, said: "While visible leaks on public water mains are being fixed, others will be hidden by the snowy ground conditions, and it is feared unoccupied holiday homes, village halls and other outbuildings could have internal bursts in their plumbing."
Simon added: "We'd appeal to people with outdoor taps and troughs to turn off any running taps. Our concern is that if the increased demand continues we could struggle to maintain supplies to all our customers. Any help would be very much appreciated."
Dingwall and Seaforth councillor Angela Maclean is supporting Scottish Water's appeal. She said: "The devastation burst pipes cause to properties is a great concern. We're very community minded in this area and I'd urge people to check on vacant properties and community groups and clubs should think about their premises too. If farmers are out tending to animals they could check outbuildings. And bear in mind neighbours or relatives who are away from their properties, perhaps in hospital."
HOW TO REPORT A LEAK
Leaks can be reported by calling the Scottish Water Helpline on 0845 601 8855. Information on protecting pipes and short films showing practical advice such as how to locate your stop cock to stem the flow of a burst can be found on a special Scottish Water website:
Scottish Water operatives have been working around the clock in freezing conditions, with a number postponing planned leave to assist their colleagues. Additional vehicles and equipment are being used to help frontline staff tackle any issues and maintain services for customers.
Workers will try to reach reported issues as quickly as possible while remembering their health and safety is also a priority. Customers who experience supply interruptions are thanked for their patience during these extreme conditions.