Water service intermediaries and water service providers (WSPs) are widely used to transfer water from one person’s taps to another’s taps.
The term water service is used to refer to the delivery of water to the premises of another person, such as the user of a tap.
The water service provider or WSP is responsible for ensuring that the water service flows to the correct end of the premises.
A water service intermediary has the following responsibilities for delivering water to its customers: • to make sure the water is delivered to the appropriate end of a water system, including a home, or to the proper place where the water needs to be delivered.
• to maintain a water service and ensure that it is delivered according to its terms.
Water service providers and WSPs must also: • maintain a supply of water at a constant level and a supply plan that describes the delivery and timing of the supply.
• ensure that the service is delivered within the water supply and that it has the necessary equipment, facilities and other technical equipment to support the delivery.
• notify customers that the customer is entitled to access to a water supply for drinking water, or for any other reason that may require them to drink water.
• pay for water service for customers, who have been using their taps to drink.
In addition, WSP’s may provide water service to those who are not in the water system.
The customer is responsible, under the terms of the contract, for the supply of the water that is being provided.
Where the water provider has no connection to the household, water service may be provided on a free or reduced cost basis.
Where a customer has an issue with water service, the customer may have a dispute with the water supplier.
In some cases, water suppliers may also require a customer to pay for their water.
In these circumstances, the water services may be charged in the same way as other charges.
Where customers are required to pay a charge, the charge must be included in the bill of charges and, if the customer does not provide a bill of sale or a receipt, the bill must contain a statement that the charges have been paid.
Water suppliers and WSMs may charge a fee for water supply to those customers who are in the residential market, such customers may pay a fee to the supplier.
WSP services can also be provided through a mobile phone, if there is an option to do so.
Water supply by a WSP may also be available from an individual mobile phone or the customer can choose to use a connected device.
A customer can request that a WSM, or WFP, deliver water services for them by calling the WSP at 0300 123 100, providing the customer’s name and address and a statement of what service is being delivered.
WFPs and WFP-owned water supply providers may charge customers for the water, which may include water charges or water delivery charges, if they have water supplied by a water supplier other than a WFP.
Where water is not delivered to a customer, WFP or WMPs may deliver the water for the customer.
Water providers must ensure that their water service services are provided in accordance with the Water Act 1994 and the Water Services Act 2006, as amended.
Where it is a statutory provision, WDPs may only charge for water services that are supplied by WFP’s or WPS’ water supply suppliers.
The regulations are clear that the responsibility of a WDP is to ensure that all water services are delivered according the terms set out in the contract.
The regulator is responsible if a WPP fails to deliver water, fails to pay or fails to make payments for water supplied under the contract as required.
Where an issue arises between a WMP and a water provider, the regulator must investigate and take appropriate action.
The consumer must be able to inspect the water to see whether there is a problem with the delivery or quality of the service, and the water must be free of any odour or other substance.
The regulation also requires that the delivery must be carried out within the conditions set out by the contract and not by any other means.
The Water Consumer Agency (WCA) is the consumer protection body for water suppliers.
It can provide information and advice to customers about the water sector, including water supply by water supply.