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Serious questions must be asked of NI Water

It seems that repeating the same actions and expecting different results - the definition of incompetence - afflicts us yet again.

With additional phone operatives working for NI Water responding to high levels of incoming phonecalls, the exchanges are usually engaged.

And, if one is lucky enough to make a connection, the operator has little or no useful information.

Many people have home computers or access to one. A useful NI Water website would be a great timesaver (and frustration reducer) - the present site is virtually useless.

What is needed is a page to which one can go to immediately and get a map of what roads and areas are without water supply.

The next stage would be to identify the state of repair work on each street and estimated completion time.

Alongside this should be an identified source of supply for the interim, be it houses in nearby streets or, as Belfast City Council has provided, at local leisure centres.

It is has been known for years that many water pipes are ancient and decrepit and that there is considerable leakage of processed water.

Why are these not being replaced? Would the collection of the water rate not have been financially prudent - even if unpopular?

Realistically, £400m would have replaced a lot of pipes and prevented a lot of hardship - but that's another day's problem.

Let's see how the Executive deals with it.

CLLR TOM EKIN (Alliance)

Belfast City Council

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