By Connor Steel
WATER SUPPLIES have been fully restored to residents across Gosport and Fareham this afternoon after a lengthy outage through Tuesday morning (April 11); which disrupted thousands of households for almost four hours and saw critics of Portsmouth Water as people returned to work following this Easter holiday weekend.
Issues initially began at approximately 6am with reports of low water pressure affecting residents across the PO12, PO13 and PO14 postcodes; whilst others later reported having no supplies at all. Rumours of a huge leak in Fisher Close, Stubbington circulated online but this hasn’t yet been confirmed by anyone at this time.
Widespread phone calls were soon made to two Portsmouth Water emergency hotline numbers which sadly overwhelmed, whilst their website crashed due to high traffic. In response the company released a statement on Twitter at around 7:50am saying it was “aware of an issue” and they “had a team investigating” its causes.
Bob Taylor, CEO of Portsmouth Water, then issued an official public apology to customers at around 9am as he gave an update; which said: “We sincerely apologise to our customers in the local areas for the disruption this morning. We are hoping to have our (normal) water supplies (to everybody affected) restored very soon.”
He further explained to customers that: “The problem this morning in Gosport began at around 6am with the malfunctioning of a control valve that manages pressures in the area. We responded quickly, diagnosed this problem and are looking at ways to restore water supplies to the (entire) area in a controlled way very soon.”
Shortly afterwards customers began to report that pressures had returned and they could use basic facilities; with staff from Portsmouth Water monitoring responses on Twitter. Their website returned back to normal at around 10am and an update published after three hours of outage; having first crashed at 7:15am for many.
A final statement on the issues was published by the company at 12pm saying that it had been fully resolved and there should be no further problems. They further thanked loyal customers for their evident patience and kindness shown despite this outage throughout the morning; apologising for disruptions and distress caused.
Credit was also paid to those good Samaritans throughout the morning, who all offered support to vulnerable people and those with babies / children. One social media user said: “Currently have water downstairs, shout me if you need anything and I will privately send you my address. The door is open but do bring a bottle etc.”
But despite water supplies now being restored to residents, many voiced their frustrations about a perceived lack of communication from Portsmouth Water throughout the morning. One Globe reader stated: “it is a real shame that customers were left for almost two hours without information despite the website crashing and a vast number number of calls made. They could have avoided all of these confusion by posting much earlier”.
Residents are encouraged to contact Portsmouth Water urgently if they continue to experience more issues today or later this evening, with any update on any potential refunds to be made in due course. The supplier also has its own page if anybody wants to make a complaint about Tuesday age, with the link available here.
PICTURED BY ALAMY (GB26HM): Water outage on Tuesday (April 11) disrupted thousands of local people.