Legal Media Advisory, From United Utilities Press Office

By United Utilities Water, PRNE
Sunday, January 9, 2011


MANCHESTER, England, January 10, 2011 - This advisory relates to stories in today's Daily Mirror, Daily Telegraph
and Daily Express, which are based on a false and inaccurate story on the
Lancashire Telegraph website:

(Due to the length of this URL, it may be necessary to copy and paste
this hyperlink into your Internet browser's URL address field. Remove the
space if one exists.)

You may be considering following them up.

The stories above falsely assert that a hosepipe ban is expected in the
North West; or that there are fears of one; or that one is imminent.

All of these statements are entirely false and inaccurate.

The facts of the matter are:

    - There is no fear of a hosepipe ban. United Utilities is not, and has
    not, considered one in 2011 or late 2010.

    - Hosepipe bans are unusual. Last summer's hosepipe ban in the North West
    was the first in 15 years.

    - Stocks in Pennine reservoirs are currently healthy - at 85%, down only
    5% on this time last year. We would not necessarily expect them to be
    'full' at this time of year. The reservoirs in this area are not low.

    - The quote in the Lancashire Telegraph story is not based on any
    statement that UU has issued them, and is inaccurate. It appears to be
    a hotch-potch of old information taken from our website, and misquotes
    from a brief conversation with the journalist last Thursday. We did not
    tell the paper (or any other publication) that we are urging customers to
    use water wisely, or in any way imply they needed to do so because of
    possible shortages and have written records of the conversation to prove

We would therefore advise you not to repeat the false claims of a
hosepipe ban, without speaking to us first. To re-publish false and
inaccurate information now that you are aware of the true facts would
constitute a malicious falsehood under the laws of defamation.

Shaun.Robinson at - +44(0)845-072-0822 -

Water Utilities News

January 10 News

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