Water company boss blames people working from home for hosepipe ban

A water firm boss has blamed folks working from residence for a brand new hosepipe ban.

South East Water will impose the primary hosepipe ban of the summer season from Monday, affecting greater than two million houses and companies throughout Kent and Sussex.

Its chief government, David Hinton, stated in a letter to clients that post-pandemic working from residence was a “key issue” behind the ban, because it has “elevated ingesting water demand”.

He wrote: “Over the previous three years the way in which through which ingesting water is getting used throughout the southeast has modified significantly.

“The rise of working from residence has elevated ingesting water demand in commuter cities by round 20% over a really quick interval, testing our current infrastructure.”

Mr Hinton additionally blamed low rainfall since April for leaving water butts empty, in addition to pointing to a current spell of scorching climate which he claims led to a spike in demand for ingesting water.

“Our reservoir and aquifer shares of uncooked water, important to our water provide however not prepared for use, are in a superb place. Nevertheless, demand for handled mains water, which takes time to course of and ship, was better than we might meet,” he stated.

“Over the previous week we’ve got wanted to seek out water to produce the equal of a further 4 cities the dimensions of Maidstone or Eastbourne day by day.”

Greg Clark, the Conservative MP for Tunbridge Wells, informed The Instances: “Their solely job is to ship ingesting water.

“However in my constituency, they’ve run out of water twice in six months – as soon as simply earlier than Christmas after we had a chilly snap, and now after a small and unexceptional heatwave.

“What they’re describing when it comes to folks working for house is certainly not particular to this space.

“There was for a while an inclination for folks to work extra from residence. A water firm ought to have the ability to predict and accommodate for this.”

A spokeswoman for the water regulator Ofwat stated: “South East Water should do higher to foretell and handle operational points, assist clients, and have interaction with them on what is going on and why.

“Prospects shall be asking why, for the second time in six months, their water firm is being caught out by the climate.”

South East Water’s Head of Service Administration, Steve Andrews, defended the ban, saying it was “launched to make sure that we are able to ship ingesting water to all our clients constantly”.

He added: “We need to thank our clients for being conscious of their water use and remind them to proceed to make use of water properly over the approaching weekend.”

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