Doncaster councillor slams “evil” bogus callers who encouraged residents to drink contaminated water

Yorkshire Water delivers bottled water to people in Moorends after problems with a bacterial contamination in the supply.
Yorkshire Water delivers bottled water to people in Moorends after problems with a bacterial contamination in the supply.

A Doncaster councillor has hit out at ‘evil’ bogus callers who have been telephoning residents telling them to drink contaminated water.

People living at 3,600 properties in the DN8 postcode area are being warned that a ‘boil before drinking’ order is still in place, contrary to the callers’ false advice.

Thorne and Moorends Councillor Martin Williams.

Thorne and Moorends Councillor Martin Williams.

A mum with a newborn baby was said to be among those in Thorne and Moorends who received a call claiming the water was safe to drink.

Thorne town councillor Martin Williams said: “The people who are doing this are just evil - I just can’t understand what their motivation would be.

“It’s just plain evil and whoever is behind this wants locking up.

“I think it’s awful that people would take advantage of others’ misfortune and try to make a bad situation even worse.”

A ban on drinking tap water was imposed on Friday in the DN8 postcode, which includes Thorne, Moorends and Sandtoft, after high levels of bacteria contamination were found.

Yorkshire Water confirmed that residents had been contacted by callers claiming to be from the company.

Dave Wilkinson, assistant director of trading services and assets, said: “We were made aware of an apparent bogus call made to a resident in Thorne from someone claiming to be from Yorkshire Water giving out misleading information.”

When we went to press, householders in the 3,600 affected properties were told they could use their tap water, but must boil it first before drinking or cooking with it.

Charlie Haysom, the firm’s director of service delivery, added: “I am pleased that sample results are encouraging and that we may be able to restore normal service as soon as possible. However, we must emphasise that until we receive further results, water has to be boiled first before being used in cooking or for drinking.

“Yorkshire Water’s investigations as to the cause of the incident are ongoing and continue to focus on the Coulman Industrial Estate as a potential source of the problem.”

Residents were warned they may notice higher levels of chlorine, and discolouration, while a flushing process took place.

A spokesman said: “This slight increase in chlorine levels may result in the water having a slight odour, but it is safe to drink once boiled.”

Water was available for collection at Trinity Academy School, Thorne.

Visit Yorkshire Water - Thorne or call 0345 124 2424 for updates.