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Launch of NI Water's Winter Preparations Campaign

24 October 2011 16:39

Dont Wait. Insulate
Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy launched NI Water’s winter preparations advertising campaign, ‘Don’t Wait Insulate,’ in Belfast, today.

NI Water’s advertising campaign provides essential and simple to follow advice to households, schools, businesses, farms and work premises on insulating and lagging pipes and general precautions in preparation for winter weather.

The campaign is being rolled out using television, radio and print media and with outdoor advertising at bus shelters and on billboards. There will also be a leaflet drop to every property in Northern Ireland.

Launching the campaign at Parliament Buildings the Minister said: “Preparation is at the very heart of the advisory campaign that NI Water has produced, a campaign which I hope will also be supported and promoted by other public representatives. The key advice is that we should not wait but insulate now; identify where stop tap/valves are, install proper lagging and look out for neighbours who may need help.
“Last year was recorded as the coldest winter in 100 years with many properties experiencing an interruption to their water supply. There is a lot of work to be done, not only by NI Water, but also by the wider community. This campaign will help the public in their preparations for winter weather.”

Interim Chief Executive, Trevor Haslett, commented: “As a company we are very aware of the areas of our business which were overwhelmed by the severe weather in December/January past. We were determined to learn from this experience and have implemented a number of improvements and changes in how we operate. However, the question everyone is asking is, ‘‘could the same thing happen again?’ The answer is simple, NI Water will be prepared for another bitterly cold winter, but we cannot do it on our own. This advertising campaign is a big step toward providing advice and information for customers to take action to protect their property and business premises.”

NI Water’s top tips for avoiding frozen pipes include:

1. Insulate water tanks and pipes in unheated areas like lofts, roof spaces, garages and outbuildings;
2. Fix dripping taps – a gentle trickle of water can freeze and completely block the pipe;
3. Keep your boiler well serviced to ensure your house is heated;
4. If you are away from home during the winter period, open the trap door into the roof space to allow some of the warm air to circulate in the roof space;
5. If you are away from home you could leave a key with a neighbour, friend or family member who can check the house regularly for frozen pipes and to ensure there is adequate heat;
6. Know where your stop valve is in the case of an emergency - it is normally situated under the kitchen sink;
7. DO NOT run your tap to avoid a frozen pipe, a running tap can waste up to 3,000 gallons of water per day;
8. Write down the name and contact details of a SNIPEF (Scotland & Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers Federation) registered plumber in case a pipe does burst.

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