Likely cause of burst water mains in Selsey and Sidlesham was 'unusual'

Portsmouth Water's CEO has apologised to residents affected by three burst water mains in Selsey and Sidlesham.

Some homes were left without water for more than 12 hours, after pipes in Coppice Lane, Street End Road and Beach Gardens burst in the early hours of yesterday (Wednesday) morning. Read more here
Coppice Lane, in particular, was hit by 'major flooding', which left cars damaged and families stuck in their homes.

The view from resident Kelly Coyle's window inCoppice Lane on Wednesdaymorning

The view from resident Kelly Coyle's window inCoppice Lane on Wednesdaymorning

Portsmouth Water sent out three separate teams of engineers to each area, and all three pipes were fixed and water was restored by 3.30pm.

In a statement today (Thursday), Bob Taylor, the CEO of the company, has issued an apology to residents and revealed the likely cause of the problems.

Mr Taylor said: "Please accept my sincere apologies for any disruption you may have experienced as a result of the three burst water mains in the early hours of yesterday morning.

"Although repairs were completed fairly promptly and water supplies returned to normal, it took us longer to clear up the mess caused by the localised flooding.

A burst water pipe caused 'major flooding' in Coppice Lane. Photo: Derek Martin Photography

A burst water pipe caused 'major flooding' in Coppice Lane. Photo: Derek Martin Photography

"If you have suffered any loss or damage as a result of the flooding I hope by now you will have spoken to one of our staff on site to progress any insurance matters. If this is not the case please contact us as soon as you can.

"We are still investigating the cause of the bursts but we think the increase in pressure following a reconfiguration of our network to facilitate repair works on a nearby strategic pipeline was to blame.

"This is somewhat unusual and we would normally expect our network to easily withstand relatively routine changes like this. The network was returned to its normal configuration yesterday.

"Once again, sincere apologies for what has happened and thank you for your patience and understanding."

A burst water pipe caused 'major flooding' in Coppice Lane. Photo: Derek Martin Photography

A burst water pipe caused 'major flooding' in Coppice Lane. Photo: Derek Martin Photography

One of the residents in Coppice Lane, Kelly Coyle, whose home was without water for more than 12 hours, said it was an 'absolute nightmare' but praised the work of engineers who did 'everything they could'.

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A burst water pipe caused 'major flooding' in Coppice Lane. Photo: Derek Martin Photography

A burst water pipe caused 'major flooding' in Coppice Lane. Photo: Derek Martin Photography