South West Water leave hole outside Plymouth home for four days
A FURIOUS resident has slammed South West Water for leaving a gaping hole outside her home for four days.
Jo Curtis, from Coxside, said it was "beyond unacceptable" in an area where many elderly and disabled residents live.
The hole was dug on Monday to repair a leak in a rear courtyard area of Teats Hill Flats and left uncovered.
The situation – reminiscent of lyrics 'You can't put a hole where a hole don't belong' in the Bernard Cribbins' song Hole in the Ground – led Ms Curtis to call the company on Tuesday. She was told that it would be dealt with within the next working day.
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Ms Curtis said: "I explained that we have many vulnerable, elderly and disabled people on this estate, and asked why they could not cover it with thick wooden boards until it was repaired as the unfilled, uncovered hole was dangerous.
"Again, I was told that it would be dealt with within the next working day.
"I feel that the service I received from SWW was beyond unacceptable – it should have been criminal for them to be able to leave the hole like that.
"I'm sure that if the hole had been on a street pavement they wouldn't have been able to get away with it."
It was finally covered on Thursday, after The Herald contacted South West Water (SWW).
Ms Curtis said that, to add insult to injury, while the leak was being dealt with the estate's water had been turned off without warning.
"SWW have said that this was an emergency shut-off," she said.
"My argument is that the leak has been ongoing since at least last Thursday, so I felt that this had given them plenty of time to have rung one intercom in each of the eight blocks, warning us that we were about to lose our water supply for a couple of hours and asking us to make sure that our neighbours were aware."
A spokesman for SWW told The Herald: "The leak was reported to us on Friday and an inspector went to investigate the problem. Our contractor arrived on site on Monday to repair the burst main.
"The water supply was turned off between 2pm and 3.55pm and this affected 50 customers. It appears that due to a miscommunication, the customers were not informed that this would happen, and we apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.
"Covering the hole was not a lawful option, but barriers were placed around the site to make it as safe as possible during the work."