Watchdog says hard work is paying off as water company complaints fall in Wales

CUSTOMER complaints to water companies in Wales have fallen faster than the industry average, earning praise from the Consumer Council for Water (CCWater).

CCWater’s annual Written Customer Complaints report has revealed customer complaints to Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water fell by nearly 19 per cent in 2014/15 – compared to an overall reduction of 13.4 per cent across England and Wales.

Written complaints to Dee Valley Water plunged for the fourth successive year, this time by over 28 per cent. Severn Trent Water – which serves a small number of customers in Wales – also reported a reduction of more than 22 per cent.

Diane McCrea, Chair of the Consumer Council for Water’s Wales Committee, said: “Over the past five years Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water has reduced customer complaints by over 70 per cent to become one of the industry’s best performers.”

“That is testament to our persistence and hard work with the company, pushing it to significantly improve its performance. We’re also delighted Dee Valley Water has reduced complaints for the fourth year running after we challenged the company to show a sustained improvement.”

Complaints to water companies in England and Wales during 2014/15 fell from more than 123,000 to fewer than 107,000. Telephone calls made by customers to water companies to resolve problems have also continued to fall broadly in line with written complaints.

Billing and charges accounted for almost 60 per cent of the total number of complaints in England and Wales. In December 2014, Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water and Dee Valley Water committed to reduce bills by 2020, before inflation, after CCWater successfully pressed them to listen to their customers’ views on price and service. But both water companies still need to work hard to show customers they are delivering value for money.

Read the full report (pdf)

Categories: Press Releases, Wales