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The UK's water industry is prepared for the year 2000 and beyond ...
The UK's water industry is prepared for the year 2000 and beyond

according to a new report published by Ofwat today.

An independent study into the state of readiness for the Year 2000

shows all the water and sewerage companies in England and Wales, and

the authorities in Scotland, are rated blue under the Action 2000

'traffic lights' scheme. That means no risk of material disruption

has been identified to the distribution of water and the treatment

and disposal of sewage.

The Office of Water Services and the Scottish Office commissioned

Halcrow Gilbert consulting civil engineers to report on the Year 2000

compliance of their water and sewerage industry. The Department of

the Environment for Northern Ireland also commissioned a report from

Halcrow Gilbert. Independent assessors checked procedures for

identifying problems and testing equipment particularly with embedded

chips, rectification work, contingency planning and staff awareness

of the millennium bug issue.

Director general of Water Services, Ian Byatt,

said: 'This is good news for customers and the industry should be

congratulated for taking the issue of Year 2000 compliance so


'I hope that this report will put customers' minds at rest that no

risk of material disruption has been identified for 1 January 2000

and beyond.

'There has been an extensive programme of checking and rectifying

potential millennium bug problems. But we must not be complacent. I

will continue to monitor the compliance plans of companies in England

and Wales and the results of further test exercises.'


1. To save computer space, in the past, computer programmers referred

to years by their last two digits rather than all four (ie: 99

instead of 1999). This meant that some computers and other electronic

equipment cannot tell the years 1900 and 2000 apart and consequently

could fail. This problem has become known as the millennium bug.

2. Under the Action 2000 traffic lights scheme a blue rating means

that 'no risk of material disruption has been identified'.

3. Embedded systems are defined by Action 2000 as programmable

devices or systems that are generally used to control or monitor

processes, machinery, equipment and communications.

4. The Halcrow Gilbert report on England, Wales and Scotland is

available to buy from the Ofwat Library on 0121 625 1373 at a cost of

£5. This price covers Ofwat's costs in preparing the information in

this format. The study is available free on Ofwat's website at

Status of water companies in England and Wales at 30 June 1999

Company Status

Anglian Water Blue

Bournemouth and

West Hampshire Water Blue

Bristol Water Blue

Cambridge Water Blue

Dee Valley Water Blue

East of Scotland Water Blue

Essex & Suffolk Water Blue

Folkestone & Dover Water Blue

Mid Kent Water Blue

Mid Southern Water Blue

North Surrey Water Blue

Northumbrian Water Blue

North West Water Blue

Portsmouth Water Blue

Severn Trent Water Blue

South East Water Blue

South Staffordshire Water Blue

South West Water Blue

Southern Water Blue

Sutton and East Surrey Blue

Tendring Hundred Water Blue

Thames Water Blue

Three Valleys Water Blue

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water Blue

Wessex Water Blue

Yorkshire Water Blue

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