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Southern Water invests in combating leaks to tackle water scarcity

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Southern Water has increased the size of its leakage team and is employing new tools and techniques to find and fix leaks as the south-east of the UK faces a future of more people and less water.
This is part of the organisation's commitment to halve leakage by 2050.
Southern Water has committed to triple the rate of leakage reduction and is making major investments in technology both to find and fix leaks to keep taps and rivers flowing as part of its commitment to both customers and the environment.
During 2020-21, the water company installed 7,400 acoustic loggers, increased the number of find and fix teams and completed 20,000 leak repairs with 250 field staff supported by 50 analysts and planners.
The company is on track to meet its commitment to reduce leakage by 15% by 2025, 40% by 2040 and 50% by 2050.
Since April, the firm has fixed 5,443 bursts and leaks (1,094 in Hampshire, 420 on the Isle of Wight, 1,660 in Kent and 2,269 in Sussex). That is the equivalent of more than 44 leaks and bursts fixed every day.
In the latest heatwave demand increased by around 100 million litres of water a day across the region.
Phil Tapping, regional demand manager at Southern Water, said: "When the weather gets warm, we ask customers to reduce their use because demand can outstrip our ability to treat water and pump it through our vast network leading to low pressure.
“It's just the same as someone filling the kettle or flushing the loo while you're in the shower upstairs- the flow can drop.
"We've worked hard over the last few years and have reduced the amount of treated water lost through leakage, including repairing more than 63 leaks a day, every day, for the last year.
"It's important for people to know that we are chasing down every leak we can at the same time as we're asking them to think twice about the length of their shower or not using a hose to water the garden or clean the car.”