The Rules of Restrictions

June 8, 2006 at 1:38 am

The sun is finally showing its face, summer may actually be here after a long, if not dry winter. Most people will be rejoicing over some long awaited rays, but it still means bad news for the current water situation in the South.

Hosepipe bans are being felt by millions and drought orders are in place in several areas. Does this really mean that people are taking the water shortage seriously though and what are the consequences or restricting water use in this way?

We have had a lot of feedback from our visitors trying to find out exactly what the restrictions cover and what happens if someone does not seem to be playing by the rules. Banning hosepipes and sprinklers is surely supposed to be preventing excessive water wastage but it seems that water can just as easily be wasted in other ways. One user wrote in to tell us about a neighbour who had refrained from using their hosepipe to water their lawn but proceeded to tip nearly 100 litres of water over the grass out of a bucket. The message of conserving the amount of water used seems to be have completely lost here.

The question raised was ‘They may not be using a hosepipe but is this excessive use of water justified at a time of such severe drought?’ I got in touch with the water company to confirm this. The ban states:
– Hosepipes, sprinklers and pressure hoses may not be
used at all unless for filling a pond with fish in or if using recycled water
– The use of buckets and watering cans are allowed for watering gardens and washing cars

So, technically throwing buckets of water over your lawn is ok? No, if it is excessive. The water company representative confirmed that if a customer witnessed a neighbour regularly using water in this way then they would be in their rights to complain to the company and the company would get in touch to give them a slap on the wrist and remind them of the restrictions in place.

It seems only fair at a time when water reserves are low that everyone equally respects the restrictions put in place. To find out about the current situation in your area, check our hosepipe ban page and for tips on the best ways to conserve water at home, read Soak’s water saving tips.

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