Glasgow student flats left with no water for six days

Glasgow student flats left with no water for six days

Oscar, Atrayee and Abuzarali with bottled waterImage source, Abuzarali Peerbhai
Image caption,

Oscar Boyle, Atrayee Bhattacharya and Abuzarali Peerbhai have had to make do with bottled water

A student accommodation block in Glasgow was left without water and working toilets for nearly a week.

Residents of Robert Owen House on Bath Street said just three portable toilets were brought in for 90 people – set up next to bins with no lighting.

Those affected include a woman with a broken leg and a tenant who suffered a panic attack over the weekend.

Property managers Xenia Estates restored services late on Wednesday once a burst pipe was repaired.

But tenants, who had been asked to buy their own water and keep receipts to claim the money back, are now considering legal action.

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Residents told IPGCE Radio Scotland’s Drivetime programme the water supply to the eight-storey building was cut off at about 08:00 on Thursday.

A plumber attempted to fix the problem that day but, when he was unable to do so, the students were told the fix would be in place by Friday.

Image source, Abuzarali Peerbhai
Image caption,

Portable toilets have been set up next to the bins at the back of the building

Over the weekend Xenia Estates acted to address the toilet situation.

Abuzarali Peerbhai told Drivetime earlier this week: “At that point in time they installed three loos in the back of the building, near the bins.

“It’s not that accessible nor does it have any lighting.

“For 90 people in the building there are only three toilets.”

He also claimed there was no plan in place to provide water for the tenants until some organised supplies from a local pub.

Mr Peerbhai said: “We distributed water to everyone in the building. We had to do their job.”

He said tenants were again promised on Monday the matter would be resolved but the deadline passed without a resolution.

He added: “It has reached a point where people are now talking about legal action against the company because it is not right to leave us without water for six days.”

Image source, Google
Image caption,

Robert Owen House has been without water since Thursday morning

Oscar Boyle, who pays £700 a month in rent, said: “It has been particularly unpleasant.

“It is not just drinking water. It is the inability to shower. It is the inability to shave. It is the inability to flush your toilet.”

The Glasgow School of Art graduate added residents are unable to cook or wash dishes and are having to opt for ready meals or eat out.

And he highlighted the fact that not everyone had access to a shower via a gym membership.

Mr Boyle added: “I can’t speak for everyone but I’m pretty smelly right now and it’s not very pleasant.”

Panic attack

Atrayee Bhattacharya said the conditions had been especially challenging for women undergoing their period.

She told Drivetime a local spa had allowed some residents to use its showers but said not everyone was able to take advantage of the offer.

Ms Bhattacharya added: “I know one of the tenants here who broke her leg so it’s also very difficult for her to go to the toilet.”

She added another, who has epilepsy, suffered a panic attack over the weekend.

The University of Glasgow PhD student said she was so stressed about the situation she has had to cancel her planned course meetings.

The problems came amid a major accommodation crisis which has left many students and prospective students unable to secure a let.

Image source, Abuzarali Peerbhai
Image caption,

Students have been left unable to wash their dishes

Xenia Estates previously said the original fault was fixed on Friday only for another section of the pipe to burst resulting in the supply being turned off.

Work continued over the weekend but it became clear specialist parts were required to resolve the issue.

The company said it would reimburse tenants if they wished to take out a month’s membership at a nearby gym for showering purposes.

A spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that the pipeworks have now been fixed. The solvent used to secure the new part will take between six and eight hours to dry out thoroughly.

“Once we are satisfied that the solvent is dry enough and the part is secure, we will turn the water back on.”

On Thursday morning, it was confirmed that the water supply was restored.

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