EXTRACT OF LETTER TO BUCKINGHAMSHIRE COUNCIL FROM Thames Water.

Water sector staff have been designated as key workers. This means that we can undertake urgent work and complete priority maintenance activity. One of the unfortunate impacts of COVID-19 is that we are seeing an increase in blockages in our sewer networks, as people doing extra cleaning or who have had problems buying toilet tolls are flushing non-biodegradable alternatives, such as kitchen roll or antibacterial wipes. This is creating problems in our sewers which can result in sewage backing up into people’s homes or polluting the environment. We have therefore started a public awareness campaign on radio and social media to highlight this issue and ask for people to put unflushables in the bin. We would be very grateful for your support in promoting this message and would be very grateful if you would consider sharing the graphic below:

We are particularly proud to have supported the team at NHS Nightingale in East London, as well as 175 other hospitals and care homes across London and the Thames Valley. We have developed and strengthened contingency plans at these critical sites and installed extra hydrants so that we can deliver water quickly in an emergency. Our aim throughout this is to ensure that if any incidents do occur, we will be able to respond faster to keep these critical services running.

We are aware that many of our customers may be struggling to pay their water bill, so have introduced a new flexible payment period. This is in addition to our existing measures which include our social tariff, Customer Assistance Fund, and Trust Fund. Please refer your constituents to our website https://www.thameswater.co.uk/my-account/billing-and-payment/help-paying-your-bill) if you feel that they would benefit from this.

Finally, I wanted to reassure you that we are taking all the recommended precautions to keep our staff and the wider community safe. We have put strict social distancing measures in place, and those who can work from home are doing so.

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