Two-week Farington water leak to be repaired overnight to avoid traffic delays

A water leak that has left a major road junction in Farington flooded for more than a fortnight will have to be fixed during the early hours - because of how much traffic flows through the area at other times of the day.

By Paul Faulkner
Tuesday, 1st February 2022, 7:35 pm
Updated Tuesday, 1st February 2022, 7:36 pm

Water has been cascading over the traffic light-controlled crossroads between Stanifield Lane, Centurion Way and Stanley Road since mid-January.

As the Post reported last week, water firm United Utilities said that the location of the problem meant that it was proving tricky to carry out the necessary repairs.

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The junction of Stanifield Lane, Centurion Way and Stanley Road has been partially flooded since mid-January

Now the company has revealed that it will work overnight on stemming the water in order to limit disruption to drivers. The Post understands that the aim is for the job to be done this weekend, although the exact timetable is subject to change.

United Utilities has also assessed the condition of the carriageway after a suggestion by two South Ribble borough councillors that the leak had caused the road to start to “sink” as a result of water being left to bubble up through the surface for so long.

Farington East ward councillors Paul Wharton-Hardman and Jacky Alty raised their concerns last week, but it is understood that the firm’s technicians have concluded that any damage is limited to cracking of the asphalt.

WATCH >>> Is the road sinking? However, Andy Mellin, who lives close to the site of the long-running leak, says he cannot understand why it was not possible to put it right sooner.

It started as a trickle but became a flood - and there are concerns about what it has done to the carriageway at the junction of Stanifield Lane, Stanley Road and Centurion Way (image: Andy Mellin)

“The gas board had to dig up around here recently and they just set up four-way temporary traffic lights at the junction, so I don't know why that couldn’t have been done this time.

“The problem has been made worse by the fact that the water is coming up through the right-hand lane for traffic turning from Stanifield Lane onto Centurion Way - so there is a lot of heavy goods traffic heading onto the industrial estate which is driving over it again and again. It started off as a just a trickle, but now it's a foot wide and is running all the way down Stanley Road to Stanley Avenue.

“I reported it back on 16th January, so that’s several weeks’ worth of water which have been wasted,” Andy added.

A United Utilities spokesperson said that the company wanted to “apologise for the time being taken to repair this leak”.

“Unfortunately, due to its location and the volume of traffic, we are unable to carry out repairs on the leak during the day. We are currently co-ordinating our teams and contractors to enable us to carry out the work at night as soon as we are able to do so.”

Meanwhile, a spokesman for Lancashire County Council said that if the authority was told of any road damage as a result of the leak, highway officers would visit the site to make it safe - but no such reports have so far been received.

He added: "We would expect any repairs which may be needed to the road as a result of the leak, or during investigations into the problem, to be carried out by United Utilities."

In response to the news that the leak is soon set to be repaired, Cllr Wharton-Hardman said that he and Cllr Alty had been contacted “by many concerned residents - and that the pair remained “disappointed with the length of time it has taken for action to be taken on this by United Utilities”.

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