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Burst water pipe leaves families high and dry

By Claire O'Boyle

Families in south Belfast were without water for the second time in three weeks yesterday.

Houses on both sides of Cromac Street in the Markets area had no supply before 10am.

Grandmother Mairead McCusker (56) said she hadn't been able to put her heating on for the second time in recent weeks.

"It's the coldest time of the year and twice now this has happened," said Mairead. "There's a girl nearby who's pregnant with a little one, and a pensioner a few doors down who really will struggle without water, even more than me," she added.

Father-of-four Paul O'Kane said the problem had disrupted his family's morning.

"Our kids go from a baby boy up to a 14-year-old so this isn't great," he said.

"The toilet doesn't work and obviously none of us could get washed."

NI Water said the source of the problem was a water main in Cromac Street that had burst as a result of work by a third party contractor, and was not linked to a similar issue on December 21. The water supply was restored by around 1pm.

A spokesperson said: "NI Water staff carried out rezoning operations to minimise disruption to customers whilst the repair was being carried out. NI Water apologises for any inconvenience this may have caused to customers."

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