Yorkshire’s dog walkers are being urged to clean up after their pets and help solve a problem that costs Yorkshire Water over £25,000 a year.
The company is faced with paying the five-figure sum to keep their paths, picnic sites and car parks clean of the dog mess so it’s safe for walkers, visitors, their work force and contractors to use.
And despite deploying dog bins and marshals to help enforce countryside byelaws at some of its 120 recreational sites right across the region, the company says it is still faced with having to clear up the mess left behind by many of the region’s irresponsible dog owners.
The problem comes to the fore even more as we enter the summer months and more people look to enjoy some fresh air, only to have their walk ruined by a lack of care. The experience of encountering dog mess is even more unpleasant for those using wheelchairs or pushchairs.
Yorkshire Water is now exploring the possibility of investing in new signs to remind walkers of their duty at its paths across the county as it looks to cut down on the problem.
Geoff Lomas, Recreation and Catchment Manager said: “The problem of dogs fouling our land is a real and current issue that effects many people. Our teams managing the water reservoirs and the assets that supply the region’s drinking water encounter this health risk on a daily basis.
“Yorkshire Water welcomes visitors to its land but we ask that everyone acts responsibly and with consideration to other users. We ask dog owners to pick up and bin responsibly any fouling that their dog may do and we ask those who are responsible to help make the fouling of land a social taboo.”
Yorkshire Water has an enforcement policy in place which could see repeat offenders banned from the area, issued with a formal caution or even prosecuted.
Yorkshire Water have been accused of putting profits above public health at a beauty spot.
Sheffield South East MP Clive Betts says raw sewage leaks onto public footpaths at the Shirtcliffe Valley conservation area every time there's a torrential downpour.
Mr.Betts says he's been told by the company that it can't afford to carry out improvements - but has refused to say exactly how much the work will cost. David Hirst reports.
Yorkshire Water have confirmed that the average bill in the region will go up by £12 per year from April 1st.
It now means the average cost per year is £368. That is below the national average.
The extra charges will help to pay for £329 million of improvements to the company's 54,000km sewer network, and work to improve bathing water quality along Yorkshire's coast.
Following the success of a first camera to catch wildlife in action at Tophill Low nature reserve in East Yorkshire a second camera is being installed.
The first camera, put in by Yorkshire Water, shows a family of otters at play.
Yorkshire Water has been fined £12,000 after a mechanical failure at its pumping station discharged sewage into the River Calder. The water utility company was also ordered to pay full costs of £913.42 to the Environment Agency, which brought the case.
The pumping station was designed to have three pumps - a duty, assist and standby pump. In June 2011, only two pumps were present and neither worked. The standby pump had been sent away for repair, the duty pump failed because of an electrical fault, and the assist pump failed mechanically.
In mitigation, Yorkshire Water said it had no intention to cause the discharge, and there was no or little environmental damage caused.
Work is starting on a new water pipeline which will make it easier for Yorkshire Water to manage its supplies in East Yorkshire. The complex engineering project will see a 230 metre long pipeline installed, crossing the River Hull near Driffield, the first pipe to do so since 1959.
The new pipe will add to the company's £300m underground grid of water pipes which was used earlier this year to move up to 200 million litres of treated drinking water a day from North Yorkshire to the drought stricken east of the region, where groundwater stores were unusually low.
Engineers will start by digging a 230 metre long tunnel which will be eight metres below the surface at its deepest point to ensure it is safely protected well below the River Humber. Specialist equipment will then fit the plastic pipe inside before the tunnel is filled in by the end of December.
Yorkshire Water is investing millions of pounds in new reservoirs that can hold enough drinking water to fill three Olympic swimming pools. They are being brought in to replace outdated storage tanks and provide a reliable supply of clean water for homes across the county.
'Someone will die if people keep ignoring danger signs to put their lives at real risk by entering reservoir waters.' That's according to Yorkshire Water who is issuing a warning to people to stay out of its reservoirs as schools break-up and temperatures soar this week.
There was a narrow escape at Digley reservoir, near Huddersfield, for these two children. They were photographed playing right by the water's edge, after having climbed under a fence and ignored a danger sign.
Following record breaking levels of rain in April Yorkshire Water's borehole stocks are at normal levels.
10 weeks ago they were down 20% on where they would normally expect to be for the time of year. Overall stocks have been boosted by more than 13 billion litres of water since the start of spring.