Thames Water fined £8.55m for leak failures

Thames Water
Thames Water were handed another record fine, after failing to prevent leakages across the capital.


Thames Water has been dealt its second fine this year, after industry regulators found that the company had failed to adequately prevent water leakages.

The utility firm has been fined the maximum £8.55 million by industry regulator Ofwat, and may face further action in the future.

“We regrettably missed our 2016/17 leakage reduction target by 47m litres per day, which represents 1.8 percent of our average daily production,” it said.

Back in March, the company was ordered to pay a record £20 million penalty for polluting the river Thames with 1.9 billion litres of sewage.

Thames Water’s chief executive Steve Robertson said of the latest disciplinary decision:

“We’re working hard to get back on track after hitting our leakage targets for 10 years in succession, and reducing leakage by a third from its peak in 2004.”

“The reasons for missing it are complex, and the evidence is being examined carefully in order to learn as much as we can,” he commented.

“But the fact that the target was missed despite significant additional expenditure clearly points to the need to improve both our planning and delivery.”

This follows the company’s annual results on Wednesday, reporting a full-year pre-tax profit of  £71.1 million, falling some 86 percent from £511.2 million.

In addition, Thames Water noted that it caused 315 pollution incidents in 2016, an increase from the previous year but under its target of 340 incidents.

According to figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, instances of burst water mains across the capital increased by more than 1,000 this year alone, as the cities outdated sewage system continued to present problems.

The Evening Standard reported that Thames Water dealt with 5,229 leaks from April 2016 to April 2017, with leaks causing mass disarray across the capital.