Man’s shock over his £2,426 water bill

Jiri Knybel from Hastings with water bill issued by Southern Water
Jiri Knybel from Hastings with water bill issued by Southern Water

A MAN who is recovering from a heart attack was stunned to receive a water bill for £2,400 for just five months of water use.

Jiri Knybel, of St Michaels Place, told the Observer his previous two bills had only amounted to £400 per year.

He was struggling to understand why he was being charged such an excessive amount.

After receiving the huge bill at the end of January, Jiri, who suffered a heart attack in December, called Southern Water to find out what had happened but became frustrated when he didn’t seem to be getting anywhere.

Jiri, who is from the Czech Republic and has lived in Hastings for six years, said: “I couldn’t believe it.

“The bill said I used 5,500 litres a day and that’s crazy. That’s enough to fill a swimming pool.

“It’s not right.

“I phoned the water company but they told me I had to pay it.

“I had a heart attack and was in hospital for 10 days so I wasn’t using any water then. I can’t understand it.

“I feel depressed and angry. I was very worried because Southern Water said I must pay.”

Rebecca Burgess, of Southern Water, said: “Southern Water has been liaising with the managing agents of a property in Hastings regarding a larger than expected bill, which was estimated based on the water use of previous occupants of the property.

“Following the submission of meter readings by the management agents, we have recalculated the bills and re-issued these to the occupier.

“An update was sent to the occupier and the managing agents on Tuesday, March 4.

“We apologise for any distress this has caused the customer and we will ensure all future bills are based on meter readings or estimates based on the current water use.”

Jiri added: “It was very stressful because I rang the company several times and they just kept telling me I had to pay the bill.

“But of course I am happy that the bill is now correct and that I have to pay less.”