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Beat the Freeze, says FSB and NI Water

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Beat the Freeze’ is the message from the Federation of Small Businesses and NI Water to Causeway Coast and Glens businesses this winter.

This message reiterates the call from previous years to check businesses across Northern Ireland are prepared for the cold weather conditions.

John Friel, Chairman of the FSB NI Region, commented: “Although we have experienced relatively mild winters over the last few years, it’s important that businesses do not become complacent with preparing for winter.

“’Beat the Freeze’ is a quick and cost effective approach to help combat the cold weather. Simply, take a few minutes to ensure that water pipes are protected and well insulated. If they are not, then take action now and potentially save money, time and the inconvenience of dealing with a burst pipe. Knowing where your stop valve is and keeping the contact number of a registered plumber on hand will play a vital role in minimising damage caused by a burst pipe.

“By taking a few simple steps, we can all play our part and help ‘Beat the Freeze’. Small businesses in Northern Ireland cannot afford not to take action this winter.’’

Top Tips for businesses:

  • Ensure pipes are well insulated.
  • Locate your stop valve and make sure all staff know where it is and how to turn it off.
  • Consider what you would do if you did lose your water supply for a prolonged period of time.  You need to have a contingency plan, for example some businesses have a storage tank which will provide water for a certain period of time.
  • If you have a meter, know where it is and check it regularly.  A higher than normal meter reading can be the first indicator that you may have a leak.
  • If you are closing down your business for a holiday period, you need to make plans in the event of cold weather; eg. set your heating timer; have someone check the premises regularly.
  • Have the number of a plumber who knows where your premises are and is prepared to attend at night if needed.
  • Make sure you have adequate insurance to cover your property in the event of a burst pipe.

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