It’s now three weeks since the introduction of the hosepipe ban and from that day it seems to have rained every day, heavily on most occasions.
The Environment Agency has said that more than half of England is now under drought conditions with hosepipe bans in place and warn it may run into next year as the situation becomes worse. But judging by the amount of rainfall we’ve seen in North Lincolnshire since 5th April it’s hard to imagine how it could get worse. Reservoirs and aquifers generally recharge over the winter months whereas this time of year sees a lot more evaporation of the rainfall, also plants, trees, grass, flowers, shrubs, etc, are growing taking in vast amount of water leaving little to permeate through the soil.
Cyclist caught in a heavy downpour on Frodingham Road
Across the country we’ve seen pictures on the TV of flooding and rivers bursting their bank yet water companies tell us that we need month of rain to replenish what has been lost during the past 18 months.
So what can we do and cannot do during the hosepipe ban? Here is a list of points taken from the Anglian Water Company’s website.
What can’t I do when I’m on a hosepipe ban?
• Watering a garden using a hosepipe.
• Cleaning a private motor-vehicle using a hosepipe.
• Watering plants on domestic or other non-commercial premises using a hosepipe.
• Cleaning a private leisure boat using a hosepipe.
• Filling or maintaining a domestic swimming or paddling pool, except by using a hand held container filled directly from a tap.
• Drawing water, using a hosepipe, for domestic recreational use.
• Filling or maintaining a domestic pond using a hosepipe, except where fish or other aquatic animals are being reared or kept in captivity.
• Filling or maintaining an ornamental fountain, except where an ornamental fountain is in a fish pond.
• Cleaning walls, or windows, of domestic premises using a hosepipe.
• Cleaning paths or patios using a hosepipe.
• Cleaning other artificial outdoor surfaces using a hosepipe.
What am I still allowed to do?
• Use a hosepipe in a garden or for cleaning walls or windows of domestic premises, paths or patios, a private leisure boat or an artificial outdoor surface, where such use is necessary for health and safety reasons;
• Use a hosepipe in the course of a business to clean a private motor vehicle, or for cleaning walls or windows of domestic premises, paths or patios or an artificial outdoor surface, where this is done as a service to customers
• Use a hosepipe to water a garden attached to a domestic dwelling or to water plants on domestic premises by people with severe mobility problems or who hold a current Blue Badge issued by their local authority.
• Use a hosepipe to water an area of grass or an artificial outdoor surface used for playing sport or recreation (but not for any ancillary use), where this is required in connection with a national or international sports event only.
• Use of drip or trickle irrigation watering systems fitted with a pressure reducing valve and a timer, that are not handheld and which place water by drip directly onto the soil surface or beneath the soil surface, without any surface run off or dispersion of water through the air using a jet or mist.
Are there any exemptions to the hosepipe ban?
There are some exemptions:
• Non-domestic horticultural or agricultural activity.
• Any activities that are necessary for health and safety reasons (i.e. necessary to remove or minimise any risk to human or animal health/safety or prevents/control the spread of causative agents of disease).
What is the definition of a garden?
A ‘garden’ includes all of the following:
• A park.
• Gardens open to the public.
• A lawn.
• A grass verge.
• An area of grass used for sport or recreation.
• An allotment garden.
• An area of an allotment used for non-commercial purposes.
• Any other grass space.
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