The investment will cover the recruitment of 30 new ‘find and fix’ teams, bringing the total number of units covering the whole Southern Water region to 190 from 100 only 2-years-ago.
New technology is also a major part of the plan with £250,000 being spent in the area. That money will be spent on installing an extra 1,600 acoustic loggers to add to the 3,760 already attached to water pipes in the area.
The loggers use digital technology to monitor the noise water is making. Another 15 units will be available for rapid deployment in hotspot areas identified by network monitoring.
More computer technology in the network control centre will be used by freshly-trained technicians to feed better data from an entirely new leakage reporting system to the find and fix teams.
Phil Tapping, water demand manager, says that working smarter will also help reducing wastage and help Southern Water reach a target of cutting leaks by 15% by 2025.
“We’ve had a good record historically on leakage and are near the top of the league table in England but we have to do more.
“Southern England truly faces the ‘jaws of death’ in Environment Agency chief executive Sir James Bevan’s memorable words. We’ll be asking our customers to try to reduce their use but must prove we are doing our part.”
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The extra funding in Hampshire is part of an overall additional £4million investment in acoustic logging by September and a £2.4million extra investment in leak fixing in the coming year.