Thames Water to spend £1 billion on Leaky London

July 5, 2007 at 10:09 am

Thames Water is planning to spend nearly £1 billion over the coming year as it replaces 540km of Victorian-era pipes in London. The company’s operating costs have risen by 32% following the summer 2006 drought crisis. It was heavily criticised last year for charging consumers high rates while failing to control leakages.

The latest results show that Thames Water met and exceeded its Ofwat –agreed leakage target for 2006/07 and that 323km of new water mains have already been installed. Chief Executive David Owens described the results as encouraging given the challenges posed by ‘one of the worst droughts in a hundred years’.

The Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat)] expressed serious concerns in June 2006 over Thames Water’s failure to achieve leakage targets for two years running. The following month saw Ofwat take legal action to ensure Thames Water remedied these failures at the expense of its shareholders.

Ofwat described the 2006-2007 Thames Water results as ‘good news for water consumers’. Customer complaints have fallen by 9% over the last year. The £1 billion spending will reduce the risk of future water supply problems, but Thames Water admit there is ‘still much to be done’ to improve infrastructure in the capital.

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