Water restrictions may be required in Wales later in the summer, Welsh Water warn
Water restrictions may be required later in the summer if there is no significant rain between now and the end of August, Welsh Water have warned.
The company said that while water resources in the majority of Wales were “in a good position” there was already concern about the situation in Pembrokeshire.
Wales has already seen a dry spell as between March and April, rainfall across Wales was only 50% of the long term average while between March and May it was just 60%.
Welsh Water said that they had already ramped up their operations to ensure that it kept the water flowing for customers, as Wales reached its hottest ever temperature yesterday – reaching the same levels seen at the peak of the 2018 heatwave.
On a typical day, the company normally treats and supplies around 850 mega-litres of fresh, clean water to its three million customers. This is roughly the same amount of water needed to fill around 320 Olympic-sized swimming pools. Yesterday the company saw this level exceed 1,000 mega litres per day.
This extra demand made it a challenge to get water through the pipes fast enough, the company said, and also drained the water quicker from the reservoirs and rivers that supply the water.
Ian Christie, Managing Director of Water Services said: “I’m sure we’ve all been enjoying this warm weather and as a company we always see an increase in demand for water when the sun shines.
“Peaks in demand normally only last a short period but with these unprecedented temperatures we’re seeing a sustained period of increase in demand. It was no surprise that we saw the demand reach 1,000 mega-litres per day yesterday.
“Meeting spikes in demand naturally brings with it some additional challenges for the company and people will have seen our teams out and about to make sure that we keep the water flowing. While we will do all that we can, it will help us as well if customers play their part as well by avoiding wasting water.”
Customers are advised to follow some of these simple steps to avoid wasting water, including:
- Don’t leave the tap running while washing hands or brushing teeth
- Take a shower instead of a bath
- Wait until the washing machine and dishwasher are full before putting them on
- Don’t fill the paddling pool to the top – and when you’ve finished, use the water on the plants in the garden
- Don’t use a sprinkler on the lawn to keep it green – the colour will soon come back once it rains
Ian Christie added: “Garden sprinklers for example are one of the biggest consumers of water in the garden as they use on average 1,000 litres of water every hour.
“This is the equivalent of what a typical family would use inside the house in two days. By avoiding using sprinklers, or investing in a water butt to collect rainwater, people could use significantly less water.
“Another way customers can help is by reporting any leaks to us which they may notice so that we can get a team out straight away to look at it. By working together in this way, we can help ensure that we keep the water flowing through the summer”.
More information on water-saving tips and details of how to get hold of water-saving devices can be found here.
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