7,500 without water in North

7,500 without water in North

Around 7,750 water customers remain without supply in the North due to an on-going industrial dispute, with warnings that more homes could see their taps run dry.

Government-owned supply company Northern Ireland Water outlined the current scale of the problem ahead of renewed talks with union bosses aimed at bringing the four-week protest to an end.

Out-of-hours repair services are not being carried out as normal due to the continuing work-to-rule action by staff over proposed changes to their pension scheme.

Counties Fermanagh, Tyrone and Derry are the areas worst affected by supply problems, with customers having to collect water from temporary tanks, with some even being forced to boil snow.

The dispute centres on the company's bid to roll out public sector pension reforms that have already been implemented in other state organisations in the region.

Staff are resisting the moves, claiming their monthly pension contributions are set to soar.

Last night union leaders tabled a new set of proposals aimed at finding a resolution. NI Water said it needed to clarify some of the measures outlined before responding.

A new round of negotiations is scheduled for later today.

A spokesman for NI Water said 7,750 properties still remained without supply and warned that other customers may experience disruption later today.

The company spokesman said NI Water had received 273 ’no water’ calls since midnight.


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