University declares a ‘major incident’ after its water gets cut off

University of York students pick up their bottled water. Photograph: URY News
16 Oct 2018 @ 9.03 pm
| News

Fancy sharing a toilet with 6,000 other people? Well this is what happened to students at the University of York today (Tuesday).

Students were surprised to receive this morning from university registrar Jo Horsburgh informing them that the Heslington West campus was facing a ‘major disruption to the water supply.’


The problem was sourced to a burst pipe. It cut water off to large parts of the campus, meaning no water to cook, shower or even use the toilet.

Staff and non-resident students were asked to go home, and catering was shut down.

Major incident response

Portaloos close to the university Central Hall. Photograph: URY News
A major incident response team was called on to respond to the crisis. Dozens of Portaloos and thousands of water bottles were brought on to campus.

Some students could see the funnier side of the university’s water issues.

After seven hours the leaking pipe was fixed and water supplies resumed. A statement on the University of York website said: “The university will be open as normal tomorrow (Wednesday 17 October) and all teaching will be delivered as planned.”