Brits urged to ration water as scorching temperatures set to hit 33C today

The UK heatwave is set to continue today (July 11), with temperatures expected to exceed 30C in some parts of the country, while the public will be told to save on water usage.

Sunday (July 10) saw a high of 29.5C registered in Wisley, Surrey, but the mercury could hit as high as 33C as these shores continue to experience weather more associated with the Mediterranean.

And not only is this unprecedented hot spell going to continue, it also means that should the daily temperature reach 28C or more for the next eight days, then it will be the longest run of hot weather for four years.

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This being the UK, spells of hot weather sometimes trigger a hosepipe ban and water bosses are not just considering that, but also limits on water use overall – the situation will not have been helped with a a chronic lack of rainfall this summer.

One Twitter user commented: “What we need now to cheer us all up is a hosepipe ban. I can feel a govt announcement in the pipeline”, while another cynic wrote: “It will only be a heatwave when the hosepipe ban comes in.”

Many people are old enough to remember the ‘drought of the century’ in 1976, when for more than a month, temperatures topped 26C, while some rivers completely dried up.

By September of that year, the nation’s water supply was so low that households in Wales, the Midlands, Yorkshire and East Anglia were left without tap water, with residents forced to queue at standpipes in the streets.

The working week was cut, vans patrolled the streets enforcing the hosepipe ban, people were told to pour washing up water down the toilet to save on flushing, while baths could not be filled to more than five inches.

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While this was an extreme situation and in 2022 will probably not go back to those times, modern-day water company bosses are already urging people not to waste water on washing cars, while telling folk they should learn to love their brown lawns.

Yorkshire Water has called for four-minute showers, while Severn Trent has urged customers to turn off the tap while they brush their teeth and recommended that gardeners use watering cans instead of a hosepipe.

Anglian Water spokeswoman Sarah Castelvecchi said: “We want everyone to enjoy the fabulous sunshine and being outdoors. However, we would like to ask everyone to think about how they are using their water.

“Every drop of water is precious, so we work hard to make sure there is enough to go around for both today and tomorrow.”


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