Scottish Water thanks locals for their patience after massive pipe burst

Scottish Water has thanked locals for their patience after thousands of homes were left without water.

Residents were left high and dry after a 36in mains pipe burst in the town, forcing Scottish Water into emergency action.

The incident occurred in the afternoon on Tuesday, July 13, but the cause of the burst is still unknown.

John Rae, Scottish Water’s General Manager for Water Operations said: “We would like to thank our customers for their patience. Scottish Water made every effort to reduce disruption to our customers and repair this pipeline as quickly as possible. We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

“The repair required our engineers to excavate a trench which was equivalent to the size of a single-decker bus. The large strategic main was repaired in the early hours of Wednesday morning. Work to redistribute the water network allowed us to restore supplies to the majority of customers on Tuesday evening.”

Scottish Water was criticised by residents who queued up in their thousands at emergency bottle drop off points throughout Cumbernauld yet found that supplies had ran out by the time they arrived at the front of the line.

Councillor Danny Carrigan said: “I am pleased Scottish Water were able to repair this pipe so quickly and thank them for that.

“However I have also raised with them the complaints I have since received from constituents about, as some have described, their (Scottish Water’s) completely inadequate contingency plans for distributing alternative drinking water.

“Many of my constituents turned up at the drinking water distribution locations as advised by the company only to find that they had made a wasted journey as there was no water left. “

A spokesperson for Scottish Water explained that bottled water distribution began at 7.30pm, two hours after the burst was originally reported.

The company struggled to meet with the initial demand for these as panicked residents were taking up to 10 cases (of 60 1.5 litre bottles) in one go, despite being told services would return to normal the following day.

Scottish Water then provided additional bottles to deal with this high demand.

Investigations are still ongoing to establish the cause of the burst, however, Scottish Water confirmed it was focused on carrying out a thorough repair job in an attempt to determine the cause and prevent further bursts.