Yorkshire Water’s director of water Neil Dewis says the hosepipe ban imposed from August 26 could continue into 2023.
27 September 2022
Yorkshire Water has told its more than five million customers the hosepipe ban could continue “well into” 2023 if there is a dry winter.
The firm’s first ban in 27 years came into effect from August 26, when it said hot, dry weather and “the lowest rainfall since our records began more than 130 years ago” caused reservoir levels to fall below 50% full.
Yorkshire Water’s director of water, Neil Dewis, said there has since been a “a slight reduction in demand” but revealed average levels at the region’s reservoirs have plunged to 35%, saying one West Yorkshire reservoir was only about 20% full.
He told the BBC: “I think the hosepipe ban will remain in place for several more months and if it is a dry winter it will be there well into next year.”
He added: “The bottom line is we will have some rain this winter and reservoirs will recover.
“But Yorkshire Water is focused on next spring and summer.
“Because even if we get a normal amount of winter rainfall, that will only lift reservoirs up to 60 to 70% by spring.
“And if that’s the case and we have another dry, hot summer, we could really face some serious consequences.”
Under the restrictions, customers are banned from using a hosepipe to water their gardens, clean their vehicles, fill their swimming pools or clean their homes.
Bur they are still permitted to complete those activities with tap water from a bucket or watering can, or using water that is not sourced from taps.
Mr Dewis said it is “very unlikely” further restrictions will be needed but said a “non-essential use ban” could be implemented if needed, the BBC reported.
A Yorkshire Water spokesperson said: “We’re grateful to our customers who have been saving water where they can this summer.
“It is important that we all continue to do so to help protect water resources and the environment.
“The hosepipe ban will need to be in place until we receive significant rainfall and our reservoir levels return to a situation much closer to normal.
“This is to ensure we have enough raw water to meet demand over the next 12 months. Whilst we can’t predict the weather, we will not have the ban in place any longer than is absolutely necessary.”