A councillor has blamed Severn Trent Water for failing to deal with a very large leak from a property despite knowing about it since April.
The authority left a card at the house on Mansfield’s Harrop White Lane informing its landlord of his responsibilty to fix the leak but failed to follow that up with any enforcement, so the problem was overlooked.
Dennis O’Neill, Mansfield District Councillor for Broomhill ward, said the leak, caused by vandalism to an oustide toilet at the empty property, looked like a small stream and must have wasted thousands of gallons of water.
Said Coun O’Neill: “The council informed Severn Trent of the leak but they said it was the landlord’s responsibility. These things just seem to be passed back and forth and no-one takes responsibilty.”
Chad was informed a day after first contacting Severn Trent by Coun O’Neill that the authority had attended the property and capped the water leak.
A spokesman for Severn Trent Water told Chad: “We have been aware of the leak for some time. The leaking water was coming from a vandalised outside toilet at the property, and as such is the homeowner’s responsibility to repair.
“We do care about wasted water and so as a gesture of goodwill, on this occasion we have sent out a team who have been able to cap off the supply and stop the leak.
“We do not have the right to enter without permission and we cannot isolate a water supply from outside of the property in case it is a shared supply and we would affect another customer.
”We cannot isolate a water supply from outside the boundary of the property in case it is a shared supply and we would affect another customer.
“What we can do in these situations is issue a formal notice, requiring the homeowner to fix the leak.”
The spokesman confirmed that a formal Section 75 Notice, under which it can issue legal proceedings, was not served but re-iterated that the leak was the property-owner’s responsibility to mend.