2 October 2018 Go back to News
We are writing to homes and businesses about your water quality and the work we are doing to improve it
Over 140,000 homes and businesses will be written to
In the coming weeks, we will write to 140,000 homes and businesses on the public water network whose supplies are on the Environmental Protection Agency’s Remedial Action List (RAL). The RAL is the list of ‘at risk’ water supplies where the drinking water quality is not as good as it could be. In 53 of the 55 water supply schemes the water is still safe to drink. In two schemes, Lough Talt in Sligo and Grangemore in Roscommon, the local communities are currently on a Boil Water Notice making the water unsafe for to drink straight from the tap. We will outline what we are doing in these 55 areas to improve supply by either an upgrade or a change in how the relevant water treatment plant works.
Better engagement and greater transparency for customers
In the past, we only contacted you if there was a problem with your drinking water supply that was likely to cause an immediate risk to your health. We will still continue to do this.
We consistently update local communities on their water supplies and the work we are doing through the regional media and various sections of this website. In addition to this, you can search your drinking water quality results dating back to 2014 via our Water Quality section using the address search bar or map. However, the recent Water Services Policy Statement calls for better engagement and greater transparency for those using public water supplies. This new direct communication is an important part of helping you to understand what we do.
Booklet outlining the issues of your water supply
Homes and businesses in 16 counties across the country on 55 different water supply schemes will receive a detailed booklet outlining the issues with their water supply which might vary from elevated THMs, inadequate barriers for cryptosporidium, poor turbidity removal, the presence of low levels of pesticides, aluminium exceedance as well as details of an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) audit of a plant.
The individual booklet will explain in detail to householders where your drinking water comes from, why we are writing to you, how we know that your water is safe to drink, information about regulation and testing, what we are doing to fix your specific water supply and where you can get more information.
HSE will be consulted if there is any possible health risk
Any drinking water sample showing a result above a specified water quality standard is notified immediately to our environmental regulator, the EPA, in line with statutory requirements. The EPA is the supervisory authority for public water supplies and regulates Irish Water in terms of our ability to produce and supply compliant water to our customers. If there is a concern about a possible health risk from the drinking water we produce, the HSE is consulted.
Speaking about issuing letters and booklets Head of Asset Management, Sean Laffey, said “We have worked closely with the EPA to identify the public water schemes that need a plan or action to improve their water treatment. We are prioritising our investment in these treatment plants. Providing safe, clean drinking water for all is our first goal.”
“In 2015, 121 drinking water schemes were on the EPA’s Remedial Action List. We have a goal to ensure to remove all of these schemes are removed from the list by 2021.”
“Everyone we are writing to has access to drinking water that is safe to drink, except for those two schemes that currently have Boil Water Notices. We monitor and test our supplies and if this monitoring indicates a potential water quality issue we consult with the HSE. If there is any potential risk to public health from the drinking water we supply we inform the public immediately. If anyone has any questions or concerns they should contact Irish Water.”
If you have any questions that are not covered in the booklet, please call our customer care helpline on Callsave 1850 278 278 or +353 1 707 2828 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). To find out more information on your drinking water quality visit our Water Quality section.