An end to the water crisis blighting large parts of Lancashire for the past month could finally be in sight.
United Utilities is expected to announce more postcodes later today where the cryptosporidium alert is being lifted.
Last night, water bosses announced a new list of postcodes where residents can stop boiling water.
And the company says it should be in a position in the next few days to tell the remaining households and businesses when their water will also be safe to drink.
As the crisis entered its 28th day today the numbers of consumers enjoying a clear supply could rise from 168,000 to around 200,000 by tonight.
A United Utilities spokesman said: “By this evening, as more UV rigs take effect, the company expects to be able to lift the boil water advice progressively for further consumers in the Fylde Coast area, bringing around two-thirds of the original area back to normal service.
“The company is continuing with its engineering challenge to install UV treatment at other key locations. And, as the week prgresses, it expects to be in a position to update the remaining consumers subject to the boiling restriction on how long it will remain in place.”
It is now almost a week since the first 80,000 households were given the all-clear in parts of Preston, Chorley and Blackpool. Three days later, on Sunday, another 86,000 customers were given the good news that was no further need to boil drinking water.
But even after tonight’s expected announcement, there could still be as many as 100,000 homes and businesses still affected.
United Utilities has stressed again it will be compensating all those affected since the contamination alert was first announced on August 6. But, while no figures have yet been menntioned, customer relations director Gary Dixon insisted: “Customer bills will not increase as a result of compensation being paid for this incident.”
The list of postcodes where water need no longer be boiled was last night announced as: PR1 0, PR1 1, PR1 2, PR1 3, PR1 4, PR1 5, PR1 6, PR1 7, PR1 8, PR1 9, PR2 1, PR2 2, PR2 3, PR2 5, PR2 6, PR2 7, PR2 8, PR2 9, PR4 4, PR4 5, PR4 6, PR5 4, PR5 5, PR5 6, PR5 8, PR6 0, PR6 7, PR7 1, PR7 2, PR7 3, PR7 4, PR7 5, PR7 6, PR7 7, PR25 1, PR25 2, PR25 3, PR25 4, PR25 5, PR26 6, PR26 7, PR26 8, PR26_9, BB2_7, FY0_1, FY1_1, FY1_2, FY1_3, FY1_9, FY2_9, FY4_1, FY4_2, FY4_5, FY8_1, FY8_2, FY8_3, L40_2, L40_3.
For all our previous coverage on the water contamination situation in Lancashire visit the links below: