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Leakage action plan

Our current performance against our targets

In 2021-22, we met our leakage target of 10.2% reduction. This was the third successive year we achieved our target.

While we are committed to our end of AMP 20.4% reduction target, we will miss our 2022-23 target.

Our final performance information for 2022/23 has been published in our annual performance report.

A Thames worker checks usage by a manhole cover

What is driving our underperformance

The hot and dry summer created an unprecedented ‘soil moisture deficit’, with ground drying out and causing leaks in our pipes and customers’ pipes. 

It also led to large increases in demand from our customers (in some areas and at sometimes up to 50% more during the summer). This drove up ‘unmeasured consumption’ and the need for us to pump more water through our pipes at higher pressure to satisfy demand that in turn also led to more leaks from our pipes. 

The re-wetting of the ground later in the autumn then caused further movement and more leaks in our pipes and customers’ pipes. 

More recently, the freezing temperatures before Christmas, followed by a speedy thaw, resulted in a new surge of leaks – both on our water supply network and on our customer’s pipes.

How we plan to improve our performance by the end of the AMP

We have an ambitious and substantial recovery plan that will see more leakage focused teams, repair more leaks, than ever before.

Our repair teams and associated support have increased and now have more than 260 gangs consisting of more than 500 people working night and day to get us back on track.

Over £55m is being spent on pressure management and close to £200m on replacing water mains over the next three years which will help to reduce leakage.