Between January and October, 409 cases of water theft were detected by Palma’s Emaya municipal services agency. These were where water was being drawn directly from the mains supply without being recorded by a meter or was being taken from a neighbour’s supply.
Eighty-four cases were uncovered during routine inspections by Emaya personnel. The others were as the result of joint operations with Palma police that followed reports of, for example, squatting. These were mainly in districts such as Camp Redo, Nou Llevant and Son Gotleu.
The number of cases is up notably. For the whole of 2018 there were 219, and these represented a significant decrease from 385 in 2017. Another aspect of the number this year is that far more cases have arisen because of joint operations with the police. In 2018, 116 were as a result of these operations. In 2017, the number was 121.
Emaya says that it cannot accurately calculate how much water is taken that hasn’t passed through a meter. The agency does, however, make an estimation in demanding payment, something which typically involves the courts.