Southport Labour parliamentary candidate Liz Savage has written to the Chief Executive of United Utilities, Steve Mogford, seeking assurances that the recent sewer collapse on Liverpool Road in Birkdale won’t be repeated elsewhere in the town with potentially devastating consequence for Southport’s economy.
“Because we have a combination of a high water table and sandy ground conditions our sewer system in Southport is vulnerable to the sort of collapses we’ve seen in Birkdale. Just a small fracture or joint failure can cause an inflow of wet sand into the sewer which over time causes this type of failure. I want to know what UU are doing to detect places where this might happen again. There are already a number of roads where there’s been repeated subsidence of surface repair patches in the vicinity of sewers. I have written to UU’s chief executive to ask him if they will take a proactive approach and carry out an urgent CCTV survey of the sewers under all our principal roads. Survey teams to carry out this sort of work cost around £600-£700 per day and I would be surprised if it took more than a couple of months to survey all UU’s sewers under our main routes. For a company that made in excess of £600 million profit last year this should be achievable. This collapse is affecting the small businesses in Birkdale Village and I’m concerned that the next one could seriously harm our town centre economy, inconvenience thousands of residents and be a major public safety incident.”