April 5, 2012 7.30 am This story is over 120 months old

Lincoln’s first hosepipe ban in 20 years begins

Save water: Anglian Water’s hosepipe ban starts today, The Lincolnite explains why, and how you can help.

Lincoln’s first hosepipe ban in 20 years began after midnight on Thursday, April 5.

The restriction comes as a drought is affecting the region, with rivers across East Anglia extremely low due to insufficient rainfall over the last 18 months.

It’s going to take months of persistent rain, not just a few wet days, to recover from a drought situation like this.

The hosepipe ban is essentially a restriction on using hosepipes for certain purposes, over an undetermined amount of time.

This means you cannot use a hosepipe for watering a garden or domestic plants, playing, filling up paddling pools or ponds without fish, washing cars or windows, or watering recreation fields.

You may use hosepipes for non-domestic swimming pools, drip irrigation systems, certain ponds, business use, and health and safety.

View a full list of hosepipe ban rules and exemptions

Bans are put in place because many hosepipes can use up to 1,000 litres of water an hour — more than a typical household uses in a day.

The average household in the East Anglia uses 145 litres of water a day.

The current state of rivers within the region. Lincolnshire’s rivers are extremely low

Peter Simpson, Managing Director of Anglian Water said: “The fact is that it simply has not rained anywhere near enough.

“Two dry winters have prevented rivers, reservoirs and aquifers from refilling with the water we treat and supply during the rest of the year, especially during the hotter months when demand rises.

“We cannot know how much rain the rest of the year will bring and that’s why we believe a domestic hosepipe ban now is the most sensible and responsible action to take to help safeguard customer supplies for this year, next year and beyond.

“We know some of our customers will find this ban difficult and we are very grateful for their co-operation. The last thing we want to do is impose restrictions but the drought is too serious to ignore.”

People who flout the hosepipe ban could face a £1,000 fine.

Do your bit to help

Anglian Water has set up the Drop 20 Campaign, aiming to get people saving 20 litres of water everyday, lessening the impact of a drought.

If everyone saved 20 litres, the amount of water the company would have to supply would drop by 10%, saving 120 million litres of water per day.

Meanwhile, the company said it will work to tackle any leaks and improve the storage and transportation of water in the region.

8 simple tips to save water

To help save 20 litres of water per day, here are a few simple tips to get you started:

  • Fix leaking taps — saves 3 litres
  • Only wash full loads of laundry — saves 10 litres
  • Wash vegetables in a bowl rather than running a tap — saves 12 litres
  • Turn off the tap for two minutes when brushing your teeth — saves 12 litres
  • Wash dishes in the sink — saves 15 litres
  • Spend two minutes less in the shower — saves 16 litters
  • Use a bucket and sponge to clean your car instead of a hose — saves 150 litres
  • Install a water butt to recycle water for your garden — saves 200 litres

For more tips, or a free kit to help you Drop 20, see the campaign page.

How much water do you use?

While Anglian Water can average out how much water households in the East Midlands use, it can also calculate how much water you use on an average week.

You can take the survey to see your water consumption on the website, and get extra tips on saving more water.

Peter Simpson added: “We believe our customers understand the need for this restriction and will observe it, as well as doing what they can to save water in their daily lives.

“The water saved through the ban, through our own efforts and through the Drop 20 Campaign, will be water that’s available for us in the months to come.

“It will also take some of the pressure off the environment we get our water from – the region’s rivers and wetlands and the wildlife that relies on them.”

Main photo: Duncan Odds