UPDATE: United Utilities to pay compensation for lack of water

Water on Wheels delivers to Clifton Road, Lytham
Water on Wheels delivers to Clifton Road, Lytham
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United Utilities says it will pay compensation to households and businesses which have been without water today.

It comes after hundreds of homes across Blackpool, Lytham and St Annes have been without water since the early hours of this morning.

The water company says it hopes those homes will have water back flowing between 10pm and 11pm tonight but says it will be paying automatic compensation to everyone affected.

Helen Apps, spokesperson for United Utilities, said: “It has taken longer than we would have liked to locate and repair the burst pipe because of its rural location. Our engineers had to walk around 15km of the pipeline route before they found the burst. It was in a field, near to a high pressure gas main, and there was a considerable volume of water to pump away.

“Repairs will soon be complete and then the mains network will need to refill. We expect supplies to reach customers’ taps by around 10pm to 11pm.

“We are very sorry for the inconvenience this has caused today and we will be making automatic compensation payments to everyone affected. Household customers will receive £25 and business customers will receive £50. People do not need to write to us as we have all the details of those affected and the payments will arrive within the next 72 hours.”

United Utilities confirmed it had received more than 1,700 calls from Blackpool, Lytham and St Annes areas about having either no water or low pressure.

United Utilities engineers are still working to repair a burst on a large water pipe at Freckleton which has disrupted water supplies to customers in the FY1, FY4 and FY8 parts of Lytham and Blackpool.

Customers were first affected between 7.15 and 9.00am this morning and engineers traced the cause to a burst pipe in a field near the Fylde village at 1.30pm.

The water company has updated customers in the affected area by text, voicemail and email to let them know about the problem and registered vulnerable customers are being delivered bottled water.