STUDENTS at one of Scotland’s top universities have been officially reprimanded for running hot taps for an hour – to wash rice.
Undergraduates at St Andrews were warned that their wasteful cooking technique could result in losing heat and hot water to their accommodation.
An email was sent by university chiefs to more than 300 undergraduates living in Albany Park, where self-catering accommodation costs just over £3000 a year.
Despite typically needing three As and a B at Higher to get into the ancient institution, some students appear to be struggling with the basics of cooking.
An email was sent on February 4 by Cecilia Galloway, deputy residential services manager, with the heading: “Use of gas boilers in house.”
Ms Galloway stated: “It has been brought to our attention that some residents are washing rice under the hot tap for up to an hour.
“The boiler in house is not designed to give hot water for this length of time and when used like this it will cause problems in the boiler system and cut out the supply of the heat and hot water to the house.
“If this is appropriate to you please refrain from this action in the future.
The email produced bafflement and mirth among students when it was shared on social media.
Rebecca Grattage protested: “I spend less than a minute washing my rice. It’s so bizarre.”
Martyn Kirkpatrick said: “Great stuff. Side splitting stuff really.”
Suky Goodfellow said: “Maybe they should buy every house a cookery book.”
Running a tap for an hour wastes up to 360 litres of water.
Chef Mark Greenaway, owner of a three AA rosette restaurant in Edinburgh, said running rice under a hot tap for an hour was “ridiculous”.
“Jasmine and basmati rice should only take around five to ten minutes for the water to run clear of starch.
“You’ve got to disturb it regularly to make sure it comes out fluffy. It shouldn’t take an hour.”
A spokeswoman for the university: “Residents were advised of the finite hot water supplies in student residences and asked not to leave the hot water running continuously.”