Put away the sprinkler: Hosepipe ban on the way for Wicklow
It is becoming “increasing likely” a hosepipe ban will be put in place in county Wicklow as temperatures continue to soar with little rain forecast in the immediate future although temperatures are due to drop in the coming days.
Irish Water has confirmed that it will have to impose a Water Conservation Order following increased demand on water and deteriorating drought conditions. This comes during the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, when handwashing and hygiene remain critically important.
Two weeks ago, Irish Water, urged the public to choose handwashing over power washing as domestic water usage increased by an average of 20% as more people were staying at home in response to the Covid-19 crisis.
Now the increased domestic demand and increase in commercial demand as businesses are reopening is being exacerbated by warm weather and the widespread emergence of drought conditions.
Since late March, Irish Water has been carefully monitoring all of its 900 water sources and found 16 currently are in drought and 38 are at risk of going into drought.
The weather forecast is for continued dry conditions which will exacerbate the situation and Irish Water’s data shows spikes of water usage on very sunny days and Irish Water is again appealing to all customers to conserve water for essential use.
Irish Water Operations Lead James O’Toole Speaking about the developing situation said: “We are appealing to the public to redouble their efforts in conserving water in the home and in the garden.
“The prolonged dry weather has exacerbated the demand on water. A drought means that the water sources like rivers, lakes, springs and ground water that supply the treatment plants are struggling, so at a time when all of the water we produce is being used, the amount we can produce is under threat in several areas around both Carlow and Kilkenny.
“Imposing a Water Conservation Order is not a measure that Irish Water wants to take but it is increasingly likely that we will have to do so. It is essential that our water supply is protected if we are to avoid restrictions and outages over the coming weeks and months,” Mr O’Toole concluded.