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Plugging the leaks
8:00am Thursday 5th April 2012 in Features
When utility companies ask customers to save water, people always want to know what they are doing to plug the leaks. South East Water owns 14,500 kilometres of water mains, with 856,000 connections leading to customers’ homes.
Each year, the company spends £13 million on finding and fixing leaks.
The team of 40 leakbusters is being increased to 50, to find and fix the drips more quickly.
Paul Butler, managing director of South East Water, said: “We fully recognise that leakage is a terrible waste of water. We have teams working round the clock to find and fix leaks and to respond to customers’ reports of leaks.
“We are proud to be able to say that we have met or exceeded our leakage targets every year for the last ten years and have allocated the funding necessary to continue doing so.”
Leaks from water mains is an industry-wide problem. Each water company is given a leakage target by the water regulator, Ofwat.
South East Water’s target is to lose less than 95 million litres of water a day through leaks in the network.
About a third of the leaks happen on customers’ properties, but the firm has met its targets for the past decade.
David Shore, director of operations, said: “South East Water has a strong track record in leakage having met our leakage target every year for the last ten years.”