Fury at months of water leaks on Wigan street

A utilities company is under fire from residents and politicians furious that a water leak on a Wigan street has not been fixed after several months.

Friday, 24th May 2019, 10:59 am
Updated Friday, 24th May 2019, 11:59 am
Residents with Coun Billy Rotherham at the site of the water leak

Water has been flowing from a duct pipe on Carr Lane in Hawkley Hall since early in the year and at times the street has become so flooded a duck was spotted paddling there.

United Utilities says the issue is more complex than was thought but work is planned.

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However, the slow pace of solving the leak has drawn the ire of residents living nearby and of elected representative for Worsley Mesnes ward Coun Billy Rotherham.

Coun Rotherham said: “United Utilities have been told on numerous occasions about this. Hundreds of thousands of gallons of water must have been lost.

“One resident has water rising up through the wall surrounding her house. This has been going on for weeks and people really are irate.

“Someone suggested to me we were going to have another Lourdes because Our Lady had appeared and a new spring was there!”

The leaks mean water has been flowing down the pavement between properties on a stretch of Carr Lane.

A couple of weeks ago the flow of water extended right down the road after one of the drains failed to cope.

Residents say they are particularly concerned with the recent hot weather about the loss of water.

One resident, who asked not to be named, said: “This has been going on since January. We’ve got the warm weather now and if it continues over the next few months we will be having hosepipe bans.

“At one point the leak was so bad a picture was posted on social media of a duck swimming in the water.

“I think they’ve had long enough to deal with this.”

A United Utilities spokesperson said: “In this case, electrical cables encased in concrete have been discovered in close proximity to the leaking water main. Taking this into account a decision has been made to remove this section of pipe from the network.

“This does require planned engineering work, which has been designed, and we are waiting on a confirmed start date for the work, which will be in the near future.”

United Utilities said it was rare for a problem to take so long to fix and stressed it understood residents’ concerns.