Ofwat hits Thames Water with £9.7 million fine

Ofwat today has fined Thames Water 0.7% of turnover (£9.7 million) for misreporting information and delivering poor service to customers.

Ofwat is now publishing final notices penalising the company, after proposing to fine the company last September. Deficient systems and low business priority on reporting non-financial data led to the company misreporting customer service information. This damaged the regulatory process.

Ofwat today has fined Thames Water 0.7% of turnover (£9.7 million) for misreporting information and delivering poor service to customers.

Ofwat is now publishing final notices penalising the company, after proposing to fine the company last September. Deficient systems and low business priority on reporting non-financial data led to the company misreporting customer service information. This damaged the regulatory process.

The fine breaks down to:
* 0.6% of 2006-07 turnover (£8.3 million) for misreporting information on customer service and
* 0.1% of 2005-06 turnover (£1.4 million) for failing to meet minimum service standards.

Ofwat Chief Executive Regina Finn said: “Thames Water’s systems and processes were inadequate and customers lost out. The penalty reflects the importance we attach to reliable, accurate and complete information and gives a clear signal to both the company and the water sector that non-compliance is not a cheap or easy option.”

The investigation did not find any evidence of deliberate misreporting. Nor has the misreporting affected the bills that customers have received.

Thames Water’s shareholders will bear the entire cost of this penalty. It will not be passed on to its customers.

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