WELSH Water hopes that most customers in mid and south Ceredigion will finally have normal water supply by the end of this evening (Tuesday, 20 December).

Around 4,500 homes were affected, with many left without little or no water for three days after supply pipes burst in the thaw, following a period of freezing temperatures.

Since Friday, Welsh Water says it has distributed 50,000 bottles of water and stocks were running low, with the priority being to deliver to customers who had registered a priority need.

The water company says it has replenished the bottled water stations at Newcastle Emlyn and Llandysul, and distributed static water tanks at these locations, as well as creating a third water station at Cardigan’s Fairfield Car Park today.

The tanks contained clean water, however customers were advised to boil the water before using it for drinking purposes, and also bring suitable containers to transport the water home.

After nine schools were closed in Ceredigion due to issues with water supply on Monday, Ysgol Bro Teifi and Ysgol Talgarreg remained closed this morning - and Ysgol Gyfun Aberaeron had to close at 12.30pm as a result of no water provision.

“Unfortunately, the water supply to the site has failed again. Apparently Dwr Cymru has removed water provision to Aberaeron,” a spokesperson for Ysgol Gyfun Aberaeron said.

“Because of this, the school will close at 12.20pm. We are calling the buses to the site now and pupils will be expected to go to the buses at the end of Lesson Three.

“School staff will be there to meet pupils to check individuals' arrangements, but pupils will not be able to leave the site without discussion with a member of the school staff.

“Due to the uncertainty and lack of information from Dŵr Cymru regarding the situation, the school will remain closed until the end of term. There will be virtual provision for pupils tomorrow.”

Meanwhile Welsh Water says it is continuing to produce more water at its treatment works, and that it is also using its fleet of water tankers to put water directly into the system.

The Water company conceded that its response has been hampered due to the number of burst mains in the area, and leak detection was hindered further by the heavy rain on Sunday.

A spokesperson for Welsh Water said: “Following the prolonged cold weather and the subsequent thaw, we are experiencing three times the normal number of leaks and bursts across both our network and customer supplies.

“We can assure you that our teams are working around the clock to fix the issues, but until they are resolved there isn’t enough water in the network to supply all properties.

“We continue to fix the issues on our network and we have started to restore supplies to some customers. We expect most customers to return to supply by the end of today. 

“It is possible that as our networks fill over the coming days, that some customers may experience intermittent outages and this is to be expected.

“We are sorry for the inconvenience caused and assure you that we have teams working around the clock in all affected areas to repair the leaks and are using tankers to top the system up as much as possible.”