Private water supply advice to tourist accommodation providers

As Scotland prepares for the easing of lockdown and the re-opening of the tourism and hospitality sector, The Highland Council's Environmental Health are advising holiday accommodation providers to make sure their private water supplies are safe to drink. 

A large number of self-catering and tourist accommodation in the Highlands are served by private water supplies and with these being closed during the lockdown period, the water supply system may not have been maintained and could create a risk to the quality and safety of the drinking water.  

Property owners are therefore advised to inspect and carry out essential maintenance to their private water supply system prior to receiving their first guests.  

Environmental Health has prepared this simple checklist to help property owners prepare:  
1.    Inspect the water system from “water source to tap” looking for any issues such as choked or damaged pipework and overgrown vegetation that may need cutting back.
2.    Check storage tanks (exterior and interior), clean them  and ensure they are in good condition.
3.    Is the treatment system in good working order and all necessary maintenance been carried out e.g. replacing the UV bulb, changing the filters?
4.    Clean and disinfect the water supply system (shock chlorinate).
5.    Prior to re-occupation run the water supply for a minimum of 10 minutes.
6.    Check no other maintenance is required not included in the above.

Anyone with any concerns regarding the water supply or the effectiveness of any water treatment system should follow public health advice and boil all water that is used for drinking, brushing of teeth, or washing vegetables and fruit until such time as they are confident that the supply system is fully operational and can provide safe drinking water.

For further information about maintaining a private water supply please visit:
or phone Environmental Health on 01349 886603 or email

1 Jul 2020