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Upgrades to the water network in Portlaoise will safeguard the water supply and reduce high levels of leakage

Uisce Éireann, working in partnership with Laois County Council, is replacing old and problematic water mains in Lakeglen Estate, Portlaoise to provide a more reliable water supply and reduce high levels of leakage in the area.

The works, which are scheduled to begin on Monday 2 November, involve the decommissioning and replacement of almost 600 metres of problematic water mains along the L-80169 that are prone to frequent bursts and leakage. The mains will be replaced with high density polyethylene (plastic) pipes which will improve water quality and provide the community with a more reliable supply of water. The works will also involve laying new water service connections from the public water main in the road to customers' property boundaries and connecting it to the customer's water supply. Where the existing service connections on the public side are lead these will be replaced as part of this improvement work.

Speaking about the project Joe Carroll, Regional Lead with Uisce Éireann, said "These upgrades are part of a significant investment by Uisce Éireann to upgrade the water network in Laois. Replacing old, damaged pipes will reduce the instances of bursts and water outages and safeguard the water supply for homes and businesses now and into the future. We understand that this type of work can be inconvenient and will ensure our work crews make every effort to minimise any disruption these necessary improvement works may cause."

The works may involve some short-term water shut-offs and traffic management measures which we understand may cause inconvenience. The project team will ensure that customers are given a minimum of 48 hours' notice prior to any planned water shut-offs and local and emergency access will be maintained at all times. Uisce Éireann and Laois County Council regret any inconvenience these necessary works may cause. The works will be carried out on behalf of Uisce Éireann by Ward and Burke Ltd. and are expected to be completed by December 2020.

This project is one example of how Uisce Éireann is working in partnership with Laois County Council to reduce leaks every day. Fixing leaks can be complicated with over 63,000km of water pipe but we are making progress. In 2018 the rate of leakage nationally was 46%, by the end of 2019 it was 42% and we are currently on course to achieving a national leakage rate of 38% by 2021. These works are being carried out as part of Uisce Éireann's national Leakage Reduction Programme which will see €500 million invested up to the end of 2021 to reduce the level of leakage across the country by fixing and replacing old and problematic water mains. This will ensure a safe, reliable water supply which is vital for our health, our environment and our growing population and economy. For more information, please visit the National Leakage Reduction Programme section of the Uisce Éireann website.

Our 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 the Uisce Éireann website.

Uisce Éireann continues to work with our Local Authority partners, contractors and others to safeguard the health and well-being of both staff and the public and to ensure the continuity of critical drinking water and wastewater services. Uisce Éireann would like to remind people to follow the HSE COVID-19 advice and ensure frequent handwashing.

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