Thames Water hosepipe ban 2022: Is there a hosepipe ban in London? What are the rules?
A temporary ban could be in place within weeks, the supplier has said, with people banned from using hosepipes or water systems connected to outdoor taps.
It follows warnings of a fresh heatwave set to see the capital sizzle in 35C temperatures, while the Met Office has issued an amber extreme heat warning for much of England.
When is the Thames Water hosepipe ban?
The temporary ban could be in place within weeks, the supplier has said, with people banned from using hosepipes or water systems connected to outdoor taps.
What are the Thames Water hosepipe ban rules?
Sprinklers and irrigation systems are also not allowed under the rules.
During the length of a ban, you cannot use a hose to:
- Water a garden or plants;
- Fill a paddling or swimming pool;
- Clean a car;
- Fill a pond;
- Clean windows
Thames Water has not yet confirmed the timing of the temporary ban but the restriction is expected to come into effect “in the coming weeks”.
What has Thames Water said about the hosepipe ban?
In a statement, Thames Water said: "Given the long term forecast of dry weather and another forecast of very hot temperatures coming this week we are planning to announce a temporary use ban in the coming weeks."
This would be the third such ban in place in England this year, after Southern Water’s ban starting last Friday in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
While South East Water is set to introduce similar restrictions in Kent and Sussex from August 12.
The Thames Water spokesperson added: "Our aim is always to ensure that we will have enough water to supply our customers, regardless of the weather."
Laws on hosepipe bans are written in the Flood and Water Management Act 2010.
It permits water authorities to temporarily ban the use of hosepipes and even of water (with or without the use of a hosepipe) for specific reasons.
This may be due to a risk of serious shortages of water for distribution across a certain area.
And you can be prosecuted and fined up to £1,000 if you fail to comply with restrictions.
Thames Water says it monitors its water resource levels constantly, with weather forecasts, reservoir levels and customer demand all factored in.
Plans for any hosepipe bans balance the needs of customers and the environment, and are informed by drought planning work, the spokesperson said.
Preparation for this summer began in winter, with Thames Water working to fill its reservoirs, speed up maintenance on the QE2 reservoir, and run a water usage awareness campaign.
The company has also drawn water from its aquifers, in order to take less from reservoirs.
The spokesperson added: “We have written to the Environment Agency to update them on our approach and informed Ofwat.
“The timing is not confirmed due to a number of operational and legal procedural requirements.
“We will be updating our customers, partners, regulators and stakeholders at the earliest time to ensure a coordinated approach.
“In the meantime we continue to urge our customers to only use what they need for their essential use."