Ageing back yard water mains to be replaced in Tralee

01 February 2022

Irish Water, working in partnership with Kerry County Council, is replacing ageing back yard water mains, lead service connections and constructing new water mains in the Balloonagh Estate, Mountain Close, St. Josephs Estate and Michael O’Flynn Terrace, Tralee, Kerry. The works will commence next week and will be carried out on behalf of Irish Water by Ward and Burke Limited and are expected to be completed in May 2022.

Speaking about the works, Steven Blennerhassett, who is Irish Water’s Programme Delivery Lead said;

In some older estates water connections, typically made of iron or lead, were installed to the rear of the property and are often referred to as backyard service connections. The pipework due to age and deteriorating condition are a significant source of leakage and reduced levels of service.

Backyard services are usually shared, running through a number of neighbouring properties making it difficult to detect and repair leaks and since all properties share a connection, leaks and bursts affect all properties usually resulting in low pressure.

Irish Water have outlined that a survey is required at each property where a backyard service is in use. The individual survey is undertaken to assess the current water connection arrangement for that property and discuss the best way to connect the new service to the customers home. 

Customers to benefit from these improvement works will be contacted directly by Ward and Burke Construction to provide information about the required works and to discuss a suitable time to carry out an individual survey. 

Blennerhassett also outlined that the short-term inconvenience would bring long term benefits to customers;

The works, when they commence, may involve some short-term water shut offs and the project team will ensure that customers are given a minimum of 48-hours’ notice prior to any planned water shut offs. Where water mains are being constructed traffic management may be in place during this time. Local and emergency traffic will always be maintained. 

The long-term benefits far outweigh the short-term inconvenience, with a more reliable, reduced leakage, much improved water quality being the main benefits for the customers. For Irish Water and our colleagues in Kerry County Council, there will also be a reduction in Operational and Maintenance costs.

Residents and businesses in the areas to benefit from the planned improvements will be notified directly and customers can phone Irish Water on 1800 278 278 if they have any questions about the project. 

Irish Water regrets any inconvenience these necessary water network improvements may cause. Details of any supply interruptions associated to this project will be updated regularly on the Water Supply Updates section of the Irish Water website.

The Irish Water customer care helpline is open 24/7 on 1800 278 278 and customers can also contact us on Twitter @IWCare with any queries. For updates please visit the Supply and Service Updates section of our website.

Irish Water is responsible for the delivery of all public water and wastewater services in Ireland. We are committed to continuously upgrading and developing critical infrastructure to support the growth needed in housing and across our economy, while protecting the environment and safeguarding water supplies.

This project is one example of how Irish Water is working in partnership with Local Authorities to provide a more reliable water supply and reduce leakage.  Fixing leaks can be complicated but we are making progress. In 2018 the rate of leakage nationally was 46%, by the end of 2021 it was reduced to 38%.