Since living in Izmir the water has been cut a number of times, so many in fact that i have lost count. Today once again the water was cut and i once again was left asking myself,
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20 December 2008
"Did i pay the bill on time?"
"Has someone upstairs got a leak which is cutting my supply also?"
"Has the water company cut the supply to do essential works?"
"How long will the water supply be off for?"
"Will i be able to have a shower before i go out the house today?"
"Will anyone who stands next to me smell my fusty unwashed body without me having to explain to them my shower is not working because the water is not working?"
"Does anyone care?"
The supply went off at 12 midnight and didn't come back on until 10.00 a.m. the following morning. There was no information, no warning and no emergency information or measures in place. In may have been the whole district or just my apartment, I couldn't tell you. This was the worst case for a while but i often wondered whether the water companies think that it is as important to get the supply back on more than we do. Ten long hours without any water is pretty bad service and i almost thought half of Izmir had been taken out by a nuke because it must have been a extremely large problem to take so long to fix.
In the UK the water supply, if cut, which is not that often, they will usually have it back on within the hour in most cases and if they don't they will owe you a reimbursement. They are offering a service like any other business and if they can't provide that service then obviously this deserves a refund of sorts. If you buy a kettle and it stops working under its guarantee then you take it back. If you buy food and you find a bug in it, you swap it for something else and don't eat there again. So, why in Turkey can't you get a refund for the many hours the water and come to think of it the electric are off. In Turkey, if there were a refund system in place hand in hand with a bonus scheme for efficient workers, i know that this would make them resolve problems quicker. There's nothing more suitable to make workmen get the job done than a promise of a bonus, and there is nothing more suitable for managers to push these workers than knowing if they do not do the job on time they will be losing money.
It's nearly 2009, I hope the utility companies will make it their New Years Resolution to see that their customers are well looked after and don't have to put up with shoddy workmanship and poor performance anymore. And then it will be a Happy New Year for all.