Severn Trent calls on Derby locals to help crack down on illegal hydrant use

Wednesday 4th April 2018

Severn Trent is asking the people of Derby to help protect the City’s water supply by reporting any suspicious activity around the company’s hydrant points.

The company is encouraging locals to report any illegal hydrant use they see, so they can crack down on the illegal activity and prevent water supplies from becoming murky or simply not being there.

The issue is a particular problem in Derby as, since 2016 , Severn Trent has successfully prosecuted five different companies for seven offences of illegal hydrant use across Derbyshire and as a result these companies have been ordered to pay over £20,000 in total.

Kate Balzan, from Severn Trent, says, “It’s really important to us that our customers can enjoy that hot cup of tea or refreshing shower when they want to, that’s why we want to stop people from illegally using our hydrants.

“A lot of people don’t realise that the draw of water through a hydrant can disturb harmless sediment that normally sits at the bottom of the pipe, often making the water appear murky. So when used incorrectly, it can affect your water and even cause you to have no water at all.”

Severn Trent teamed up with Aquam Water Services so now authorised standpipes are painted bright green and feature the Severn Trent and Aquam logo, making it easier to spot those using the hydrants illegally.

“Those who use the authorised bright green standpipes, are trained to use them properly. People using non-authorised standpipes are not only possibly causing homes to have murky water, but also taking water and not paying for it, which just isn’t fair,” said Kate.

If anyone sees someone they believe is using an illegal standpipe from a Severn Trent hydrant:

•    Don’t approach them;

•    Note down where they are and when it is;

•    Make a note of the company name;

•    If you can do it safely; Take a picture showing the vehicle and the standpipe attached

•    Send the detail to

“If you ever experience your water appearing murky, simply run the first mains fed tap at a gentle rate for 20 minutes and the water should clear.  You may need to do this a few times to completely clear the water.  It’s nothing to worry about, and this simple advice may avoid the need for you to call us.”

For more information about illegal hydrant use, please visit our website: