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Burst pipes over weekends must wait to cut costs

A DUBLIN authority has refuted claims it will not repair burst water pipes at the weekend, leaving householders running water, due to high costs.

County manager David O'Connor said that no householder in Fingal would be left without water over a weekend.

But the council no longer reacts to any pipe break at weekends, he said.

Labour's Cllr Tom Kelleher asked if the council had decided not to repair recent burst pipes at the Rath and Drisheog, outside Swords, as the bursts happened at the weekend.

"This is not the way forward," he said, "Providing water is a basic part of our service to customers."

Mr O'Connor said the Water Services Department is operating within a budget.

He said the council has looked at its pattern of repairs leaks, and no longer reacts to any leak at any time.


"It is not my intention for people to be left without water," he said, "However, if a burst occurs at the side of the road over a weekend, and there is no consequential damage or inconvenience, it makes sense to wait to repair it."

Cllr Ciaran Byrne (Lab) said a water pipe burst in Skerries on Saturday morning and officials were out repairing it very quickly.

However, he criticised the council's emergency support phone line, saying it wasn't working last weekend.

"It was really frustrating," he said. "I was cut off, the number wouldn't ring or when I did get through I was sent back to the main Fingal council number."

Officials expressed surprise at Cllr Byrne's difficulties, saying the call centre is monitored.

Head of human resources Peter Caulfield said he would check out Cllr Byrne's concerns, as there may be a problem with the system if large number of people call at the same time.