Winter water services

Burst water pipe

Water companies are undoubtedly affected by winter weather. We can help with a range of innovative solutions.

With the cold winter of 2008/9 seeing a fourfold increase in burst pipes and the following two winters each seeing significant occurrences of leakage and pipe bursts, water companies need to be prepared to deal with all the British weather can throw at it. We can help with a range of solutions:

Weather intelligence models

The Met Office and Thames Water have signed a joint agreement to launch a suite of weather intelligence models for the water industry. We have adapted models developed by Thames Water so they can be applied across the water industry to anticipate the effect of the weather on the distribution network.

By assessing past weather data Thames Water has been able to track leakage, demand, pipe bursts and seasonal night use over the past year. In areas where there were high instances of leakage or pipe burst they targeted areas that experience supply problems and prioritised maintenance work. They can also optimise resources and improve planning and risk management.

"These models have helped us meet our leakage targets, gear-up in time to deal with increases in pipe burst caused by freezing weather, and predict how much water our customers are going to need each day, which means we can get it to them as efficiently as possible". Richard Aylard, sustainability director for Thames Water.

Weather intelligence model trials

Following successful pilots with other companies, which have shown some excellent results, we are looking for other companies to trial these weather intelligence models. Contact the water team today to find out how they could benefit your business.

Read an overview of our services for the industry in an article titled 'Before the Storm' in Utility Week.


Analyse the potential impacts of climate change and plan for the future with our bespoke consultancy services. We can provide an understanding that helps you explore what to expect from weather conditions now and in the future, and how best to deal with them. Contact the water team to find out how our consultancy services can help you.

Understand the forecast

We are currently developing a training course for those working in the water industry. The course aims to give you a better understanding of meteorological information so you can optimise operations and safety.

If you would like to register an interest in this course, please email the Met Office college or discover the range of training courses currently on offer at the Met Office college.

Asset management

Severe weather can have a detrimental impact on a water companies assets. Our accurate winter forecasts can help you manage your operations and maintenance, maintain supply and plan for severe weather in the future.

For example, our consultancy services for the water industry for your site can help you identify the optimum time to send workmen to known operational hotspots, pre-deliver chemicals to remote water treatment works and when to assign more staff to the call centre to answer the public's call. This will help you to increase customer satisfaction score as measured by Ofwat. Contact the water team to find out more about our hazard forecasts.

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Last updated: 18 April 2016

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