Ofwat has opened an investigation into Southern Water to determine if the water company has breached its “statutory duties and licence obligations”.

The investigation will look at the performance of Southern’s wastewater treatment sites and the company’s reporting of relevant compliance information to the regulator.

A statement from Ofwat, issued today (2 February), said: “We have informed the company and are in the process of gathering and reviewing information as part of our investigation.

“We will conclude the investigation as quickly as we can to establish whether or not there has been any contravention and whether we need to take any enforcement action. We will not be providing any further comment on the investigation at this time.”

A spokesperson for Southern Water, added: “As a regulated company, we work closely with our regulators, who are entitled to make inquiries into how we operate our wastewater treatment sites, and who do so regularly.

“In June 2017 Ofwat commenced an investigation into the published performance of our wastewater treatment sites. We are, of course fully co-operating and assisting Ofwat with its inquiries.”

They said: “It is an essential principle at Southern Water that we work constructively with our regulators. We are committed to working with Ofwat and all our regulators to ensure that we continue to improve our services.

“As these investigations are ongoing, we are limited on what we can say at this time, but we will provide further updates on the situation – and the work that we are doing – once we are able to do so.”