A TEST Valley man has slammed a water company after claiming a burst main sent water flowing onto a main road yesterday.

Gareth Thomas, who lives in Fernyhurst Avenue in Rownhams, discovered the leak in Bakers Drove at 11am before finding the water had travelled to Romsey Road.

Now, the 38-year-old has heavily criticised Southern Water for allowing water to pour onto Romsey Road, claiming "it was really dangerous" there were no signs alerting drivers to the standing water.

He hit out at the company for "wasting water in the middle of a heatwave", believing the water had caused part of Bakers Drove to crack.

However, Southern Water insisted they sent an "inspector to the site to investigate the leak", adding the problem was resolved "that evening". 

Gareth said: "I saw the main had burst in Bakers Drove, when I was walking to the Co-op in Nursling Street, and Southern Water had originally left a cone there before they were due to repair it on Thursday.

"I thought they were having a laugh when I just saw the cone, so I rang up Southern Water and gave them a mouthful.

"The water was flowing down onto Romsey Road, which was really dangerous as there were no warning signs out saying there was standing water there."

The Roadchef employee stressed: "I said to them on the phone 'you're wasting water right in the middle of a heatwave, which you seem to think is acceptable, but when people don't pay their bills on time, or can't pay them particularly because of coronavirus, you are on them straight away'."

"They seem to think the leak is not that serious and it is okay for the water to be left running, so someone had to give them a telling off."

Gareth also claims cracks have started to appear in Bakers Drove, due to the standing water, after Hampshire Highways spent "thousands of pounds" resurfacing it; he believes these improvements were done after utility companies had "dug up" the road for previous works.

However, he added at 12.14pm he did see "contractors for Southern Water", who had started repairing the leak after complaining to the company.

A spokesperson from the water company said: "We’re sorry for any inconvenience caused by a leak at Bakers Drove, Romsey on Wednesday morning.

"We sent an inspector to site to investigate and made the necessary repairs that evening.

"We always aim to repair a leak or burst as quickly and as safely as possible, whilst prioritising emergency works across a wider area."