Britons brace for MORE hosepipe bans if faced with a dry winter, Thames Water warns

Hosepipe ban comes into force amid hot and dry conditions

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On Tuesday, the company announced that it will introduce a hosepipe ban in the coming weeks as the dry, hot weather continues. South East, Southern and Welsh Water have also announced bans in their regions.

The UK is facing drought after consistent hot weather and the direst first seven months of the year in decades.

Water companies have been warned by the Government to protect essential supplies heading into a “likely very dry autumn”.

Speaking to Sky News, Cathryn Ross, Thames Water’s director of strategy and external affairs, said that the likelihood of the dry weather continuing into the Autumn and even Winter means that a post-summer hosepipe ban can’t be “ruled out”.

She said: “The difficult thing about drought is you know when you go into a drought, you don’t know when you’re coming out.

“The forecast does show little or no rain for the foreseeable future and that’s not a good position.

“This is an unprecedented circumstance.

“We have all been living through this incredible hot weather through July.

“We rely on rivers and groundwater for most of our water.

“And we rely on rainfall in the spring and in the winter and autumn to replenish that.

“If we go through another dry winter we are going to see a prolonged period of water shortage and the drought is going to go on.

“What we are hoping is that our customers will respond to the request to use water wisely, they will do what we’re asking them to do by not using hosepipes, and that will mean that we can conserve those water stocks so we can get through even a dry winter without having to ramp-up restrictions.

“But we really can’t rule that out. 

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“We don’t know exactly how our customers will respond.”

Analysis from the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (UKCEH) has shown that low or exceptionally low river flows and groundwater flows are likely to continue in the next three months in southern England and Wales.

Environment Secretary George Eustice has met water company bosses, assured him that water supplies remained resilient across the country.

He said: “Each company has a pre-agreed drought plan which they are following, and I have urged them to take any precautionary steps needed to protect essential supplies as we go into a likely very dry autumn.”

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