Council to fine Thames Water for unacceptable delays to water works

Release Date: 13 November 2018

Thames Water will be fined for any ongoing delays to the completion of sewer main repairs at 391 Richmond Road, adjacent to Richmond Bridge. 

The emergency works are as a result of someone pouring a substantial amount of concrete into the sewer.  This caused a blockage over 35 metres long. Whilst the pipe is being replaced, Thames Water has had to install two tankers to pump out waste 24 hours a day, to protect the environment and ensure nearby properties and businesses are not flooded with sewage.

This work has taken a lot longer than the three weeks originally anticipated by Thames Water and the delays have caused significant disruption to nearby businesses and residents.

Whilst the Council is supporting the investigation into the culprit of the concrete, the repair works have clearly taken too long.

Therefore, the Council will now be fining Thames Water (under section 74 of The New Roads & Streetworks Act) for prolonging completion of these works. Daily fines will be applied from today (Tuesday 13 November).

To enable works to be completed as soon as possible the Council has approved 24-hour working however, if residents or businesses have any issues with noise attributed to these activities, please file a complaint on the Council’s website.

Thames Water are continuing their investigation into the cause of this serious incident and all enquiries from affected businesses should be directed to them in the first instance.

Cllr Alexander Ehmann, Cabinet Member for Transport, Streetscene and Air Quality said:

“Clearly the blame for these works lies with those who were responsible for the concrete entering the sewer. We have been pressing Thames Water to conclude their investigation into the cause and we hope they will ensure appropriate fines and compensation for local businesses will follow.

“However, Thames Water have taken far too long to repair the problem and weeks of proposed work have turned into months of disruption.  That is why Richmond Council have begun daily fining Thames Water for non-completion of the repairs.

“We hope that this will act as a necessary impetus to complete the works at the earliest opportunity and return the area to normality.”

All queries from affected businesses should be addressed in the first instance to Thames Water on 0800 316 9800 quoting your address and reference number BB971876.

Notes for editors

If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact Elinor Firth on 020 8487 5159.

Reference: P557/18

Updated: 3 December 2018