Water company fined over ‘botched’ repairs that caused travel delays
Published: Wednesday, November 27, 2019
Thames Water has been ordered to pay more than £2,500 in fines and legal costs after a set of prolonged and poorly managed roadworks in Earlsfield caused transport disruption in the area.
The utility company was prosecuted by the council’s Network Management Team after a set of roadworks in Garratt Lane were mismanaged and took longer to complete than they should have.
Magistrates heard that Thames Water dug a hole in the road surface to fix a leaking pipe before realising the leak was actually 140 metres away.
Then without applying for a licence granting them permission to open up a second works site, they erected three way temporary traffic lights on Garratt Lane and began further excavations.
The presence of the temporary traffic lights on such a busy road caused significant disruption in the area.
In court Thames Water pleaded guilty to a highways offence and were fined £1,000 plus the council’s prosecution costs and other costs of £1,555.
Wandsworth’s deputy director of environment and community services Kevin Power said: “This whole affair was badly handled by Thames Water and resulted in a lot of travel disruption for our residents and local businesses.
“By taking the matter to court we hope this will send out a message to all the utility companies that they need to plan their works properly and seek the correct approvals and permits where required.”