Cumbria

Storm Ciara: Further water supply wait despite fixed pipe

United Utilities engineers pumping water into the damaged system
Image caption Repairs to the water mains pipe had been hampered by severe weather

People are facing another day without a water supply despite repairs to a damaged mains pipe being completed.

A major incident was declared after damage, caused by Storm Ciara on Sunday, threatened supplies to about 8,000 properties in Cumbria.

United Utilities said engineers repaired the pipe on Wednesday afternoon and the system had gradually been refilling overnight.

But it warned some customers might not see supplies return until Friday.

Work to fix the pipe was hampered by severe weather.

Appleby, Shap, Orton, Low Braithwaite, Threlkeld and Glenridding were among the areas affected.

United Utilities said 90 million litres of water needed to be pumped into the system.

Helen Apps from the company said a team of engineers spent the night monitoring the repaired pipe to check it was holding up.

She described the situation on Thursday morning as "much more positive".

"It's very difficult to say precisely which areas will come back on when but as a general rule of thumb the lower down you are in a valley, the less water pressure you will need and you will come on a bit quicker," she said.

"The higher up you are on a hill, it may take a bit longer."

Image copyright United Utilities
Image caption United Utilities said free bottled water will continue to be available

Sally Seed, from Orton, near Tebay, said they had their water back after losing pressure on Monday.

"I did a quick check and although it's running slightly cloudy at the moment, which they warned us it might, we do seem to have some pressure back," she said.

She said they had been managing with bottled water for cooking and drinking and using water from a butt or a beck in the village for flushing.

GP practices at Shap and Glenridding, which had been affected by the water supply problems, have returned to operating as normal. A number of schools around Cumbria are still closed.

Bottled water stations are staying open on Thursday, for those still without supplies, at:

  • Glenridding Village Hall, Penrith
  • The Crown Inn, Ivegill
  • Shap Memorial Hall, Shap, Penrith
  • Market Square, Kirkby Stephen
  • Moot Hall, Boroughgate, Appleby-in-Westmorland
  • Pooley Bridge Village Hall, Pooley Bridge, Penrith
  • Greystoke Village Greystoke, Penrith
  • Tebay Services (Northbound), Westmorland Place, Orton

United Utilities has issued a telephone number for the vulnerable or sick who are unable to get their own bottled water - it is 0345 672 3723. There is also a number for farmers who need any help - 0345 0726071.

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