A TEMPORARY use ban – more commonly known as a hosepipe ban – will come into effect today for over 60,000 households served by Llys y Fran reservoir in Pembrokeshire.
Following the driest year since 1976, record temperatures and record levels of demand for water, water resources for the Pembrokeshire have now hit drought levels.
While this does not pose an immediate risk to water supplies for the area, Welsh Water is taking this necessary step to ensure enough water remains to continue supplying customers and over the coming months.
From 08.00am today (August 19th) the Temporary Use Ban will come into force for customers in Pembrokeshire and a small adjoining part of Carmarthenshire. Customers in the affected area have already been sent letters to advise them that they will not be able to use a hosepipe to carry out activities in and around their properties such as watering plants or filling paddling pools or hot tubs.
A full list of what people aren’t allowed to do under the ban and the exceptions can be found here.
Pembrokeshire has only seen just over 60% of the expected rainfall between March and July and since becoming aware of the lower than normal rainfall, the company has undertaken a number of activities to help conserve water in the area. This has included increased detection and repair of leaks, plus the use of water tankers to respond to peak periods of demand in some parts of the county to help maintain supplies.
The situation in Pembrokeshire is not unique in the UK and other water companies across England have already introduced hosepipe bans across their operating areas. For Welsh Water, the ban applies to only 4% of its customers and all customers in the affected area have been written to.
Ian Christie, Welsh Water’s Managing Director of Water Services said:
“As a responsible company, we have detailed plans in place to ensure we continue to supply customers especially when an area falls into drought which includes introducing temporary use bans. It is not a decision we take lightly because we know the inconvenience it can cause, but if we don’t take action now then there would be a real risk of further restrictions later which is something we really want to avoid for our customers. With no significant rain in the forecast it is important that we all work together to make sure the water continues to flow. _
We are also doing our bit as well and have increased the number of people in the area we have finding and fixing leaks. This has seen us increase manpower in the area by 70% which in turn means we are now detecting and fixing 40% more leaks compared to 2021. We do however appreciate that customers can get frustrated if a leak isn’t fixed as soon as they report it to us. While the majority of leaks are fixed immediately, there are some which can prove to be more complex and requires traffic management so the work can be done safely. These then can take longer however we can assure our customers that we are doing everything we can to fix each one as quickly as we can.
Mr Christie added:
“We really do appreciate the steps people have already taken to limit the amount of water they use but we would urge
everyone now in the affected area to respect the ban and not use a hosepipe. There are exceptions, particularly for those holding a Blue Badge or on our Priority Service Register.