Greg has welcomed the move by the national water regulator Ofwat to begin enforcement action against South East Water. This follows the debate in Parliament that Greg triggered and meetings Greg had with the Chief Executive of the regulator, David Black, to press for action following the failure of South East Water to supply water to constituents in and around Tunbridge Wells in December 2022 and June 2023.
Ofwat have today announced that they are opening an enforcement case into South East Water to investigate whether it has failed in its statutory duty to develop and maintain an efficient water supply system.
The formal investigation will centre on the lack of resilience of South East Water’s network and on its responsiveness to customers during the periods of disruption. If the company is confirmed as having failed in its duties, the regulator has the power to direct more investment to be made by the company and can impose fines of up to 10% of turnover, which would be up to £26 million.
After speaking with Ofwat again about the announcement Greg said:
“Following my conversations with the Chief Executive of Ofwat, I am pleased that the regulator has started formal proceedings against South East Water following their failure to supply water to thousands of my constituents twice in the last 12 months.
“Three things are essential: the network must be upgraded so that these outages cannot happen again, the responsiveness to customers must be transformed, and the company should be fined as a sanction for the chaos that it caused.”
“I will continue to liaise closely with Ofwat until all three requirements are met.”