As a precaution, residents across Lancashire, including Blackpool, are advised to boil their drinking water.

United Utilities is advising customers in these areas to boil their water for all drinking and eating purposes as a precaution until further notice.

Routine tests at Franklaw water treatment works detected traces of cryptosporidium and although the traces are low the company is advising customers to boil their water as a precaution.

Martin Padley, Chief Scientific Officer at United Utilities, said: “The advice is being given purely as a precautionary measure as we carry out additional tests today.

“We apologise for the inconvenience but the health of our customers is absolutely paramount.”

People can continue to use tap water without boiling for general domestic purposes such as bathing, flushing toilets or washing clothes.

Residents are asked to take extreme care when boiling water because of the danger of scalding. Simply bring water to the boil and let it cool.

United Utilities is monitoring water supplies and is hoping to be able to lift the boil water advice as soon as possible.

Residents with questions or concerns can contact 03456 723 723. Updates will be available at unitedutilities.com

People can continue to use tap water without boiling for general domestic purposes such as bathing, flushing toilets or washing clothes.

Kate Brierley from Public Health England said: “We would remind people in the affected areas to follow the advice from United Utilities and boil their drinking water and allow to cool before use. The levels of cryptosporidium detected in the water supply is low and the advice to boil the water is as a precaution. If people feel unwell or experience symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting they should contact NHS 111 or see their GP.

“There is no specific treatment for cryptosporidiosis. In most cases the symptoms of abdominal pain and diarrhoea settle in a few days. However, in a few cases cryptosporidiosis can be unpleasant with diarrhoea lasting for several weeks It is important to drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration.”


Notes to Editors:

  • Cryptosporidium is a tiny parasitic organism that causes an infection known as cryptosporidiosis in people and livestock. The most common symptom is watery diarrhoea that can range from mild to severe.
  • Cryptosporidiosis is most common in children aged between one and five years, but it can affect anyone. People with weak immune systems are likely to be more seriously affected.
  • Infected people should stay away from school or work until they have been free of symptoms for 48 hours. They should not go swimming until they have been symptom-free for two weeks.

For more information on Cryptosporidium visit: www.unitedutilities.com/documents/Cryptosporidium.pdf  and www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Gastroenteritis/Pages/Symptoms.aspx


Levels of contamination are low and this advice has been issued as a precaution.

However, if you think you may be unwell or have symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting as a result of drinking tap water call NHS 111 for fast, free advice.