Scilly Councillor suggests water leak detection dog
An Isles of Scilly Councillor has suggested a time may come when Scilly employs a water leak detection dog.
Cllr Marian Bennett's comments at Tuesday's (August 7th) Full Council meeting followed a discussion of steps being taken to tackle the critical water supply situation on St Mary's and Bryher.
Craig Dryden, Senior Manager for Infrastructure, said that the Council's Water team has been working "tirelessly" to improve the efficiency of the water system, including tackling some leaks.
"We had one problematic one in the Longstone area," he said.
Cllr Bennett later said: "Perhaps the time will come when Scilly will need one of those dogs featured on Countryfile this week which tracks water leakage underground.
"They were Spaniels that really could successfully locate an area which was leaking underground."
A 21-month-old Cocker Spaniel called Snipe has been trained by water company United Utilities to detect leaks in rural areas of the North West, where water does not always show above ground.
Snipe, who was a stray before being rescued in Ireland, has undergone a "rigorous training programme" and can recognise trace amounts of chlorine which may have leaked from a water pipe. Tap water consists of one part chlorine per million parts water.
Cllr Bennett added: "If this happens another year when the school is still working we ought to run a competition for the best slogan from children. I remember many years ago we had Woman’s Hour here at the time of a water shortage and there were several good slogans. One I remember and constantly repeat to myself is 'four pees to a pour'."
She also requested clarification of the definition of a 'Navy shower', which was suggested by Cllr Avril Mumford on tonight's episode of BBC Spotlight.
Cllr Mumford explained: "You turn the water on to wet yourself, turn it off and soap yourself, turn it on and rinse and be out of the shower within about one and a half minutes."