Council “sorry” for tower block power cuts in St Albans

St Albans City & District Council

St Albans City & District Council - Credit: Archant

An apology on behalf of the district council has come from its chief executive James Blake in the wake of water leaks which knocked out power for the best part of two days for residents of a city centre tower block.

Telford Court in Alma Road, St Albans, which has 60 flats, had no power or water between the evening of Sunday, November 9, and midnight on Monday, November 10.

It affected the lighting and lifts and was followed by an additional power cut on the evening of Saturday, November 15, which affected around 30 flats.

The two power failures were both connected to water leaks which caused the power cables to short circuit, cutting off the electricity.

Mr Blake explained: “The first leak was due to corrosion of the water main at the block, where we have now carried out temporary repairs.

“The second leak was related to a bath waste pipe in a particular flat which has now been fixed.

“So while both failures were caused by water leaks, the two leaks appear to be unconnected.”

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Temporary repairs had been carried out to get the power back on but Mr Blake said he was conscious that there was a risk of further power failures until the underlying problem was resolved.

To that end the council had commissioned surveyors and had issued specifications for work on both the electrical and water system.

Apologising to residents on behalf of the council, Mr Blake said: “I do understand just how disruptive it is not to have power for significant lengths of time.

“It’s a top priority for me and the housing team to get to the root of the problem and to fix it.”

He added: “I want to thank all residents at Telford Court for their patience in difficult circumstances. In addition I’d like to thank council staff, colleagues in the police, our contractors and volunteers.

“Many worked into the early hours to try and get the power up and running again and to look after Telford Court residents.”

The council’s head of housing, Karen Dragovic, has written to all residents to apologise and to explain what the council is doing to rectify the problems.