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Scottish Water issue advice on winter weather preparations

Written by Scott Campbell.
Published at 10:20 GMT on Saturday, October 22nd, 2011.

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SCOTTISH Water have issued advice and information leaflets to customers and holiday home owners, advising them on how to protect their pipes throughout the winter season. 

The winter campaign comes after Scottish Water launched its special winter section of their website.  

Working in partnership with VisitScotland, Scottish Water is encouraging holiday home owners to be prepared and ensure put measures in place to properly heat, insulate and protect their property whilst it is not in use throughout the winter season, in order to reduce the risk of burst pipes and water damage.  

VisitScotland's Quality Assurance Manager, Colin Houston, commented on the partnership: “It is important that the holiday home industry in Scotland prepares the best it can against severe weather conditions. Whilst the seasons of letting are extending year on year there are times when a property is vacant and it is important that no damage occurs at this time, there can be nothing worse than checking a property is ready for a weekly let to find just days in advance that there has been some water damage! 

“Lagged pipes, draft exclusion and insulation also help to minimise energy waste and reduce running costs with the added benefit of creating a cosy environment for our visitors.”

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Scottish Water is advising people to follow their winter code:
  • Heat, insulate and protect your pipes. 
  • Leave your heating on at a low setting.
  • If your holiday home is unoccupied make sure you or someone you know regularly checks for any problems. 
  • If the property is going to be vacant over the winter months, turn off the water supply and drain the system. A licensed plumber should be able to advise you about this. 
  • Keep insurance documents somewhere secure and water-tight so you can access them easily if needed. 
  • Locate your stop valve. 
  • Keep a note of the telephone number of a local licensed plumber. 
  • Keep a note of the Scottish Water Customer Helpline number – 0845 601 8855. 
  • Be a good neighbour and keep an eye out for your neighbours, especially the frail, elderly and disabled. 

Adding to Mr Houston's comments, Mark MacLaren, Scottish Water Regional Community Manager for the area, said: “While we’re advising all customers to take action to protect their properties it is extremely pertinent that we make every effort to reach holiday home owners as they prepare to lock up for the winter. Over the last couple of years our frontline teams have responded to potential supply problems in rural communities, discovering bursts inside unoccupied holiday homes or community facilities. The support of the tourism sector is essential in protecting our wider communities.” 

Scottish Water's early advice is in an effort to continue to provide their services to over 2.4million customers, after last year's weather saw Scottish Water having to repair over 2,000 burst pipes as well as having answering over 40,000 calls.

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