Hosepipe ban in Sussex
The hosepipe ban took effect in East Sussex from midnight as both water companies, Southern water and South East Water impose the ban to help preserve scarce water resources over the summer months.
The new rules have been introduced as a result of one of the driest two-year periods on record.
Individuals who use a hosepipe could be fined £1,000 until the temporary use ban ends. This means that filling ponds that don't contain fish, watering plants and lawns or cleaning outside surfaces with a hosepipe are now banned. Cleaning cars and filling swimming pools are also activities that are banned under the new rules.
Exemptions are being made for surfaces used for international sports, which means the Olympics and Paralympic games are not affected by the ban. Disabled people with blue badges are exempt from the ban as are certain businesses.
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Local water companies, Southern Water and South East water have been criticised for not doing more to repair leaks. Billions of litres of water are lost every day because of the leaks.
They say that they have had no option but to introduce the bans. The problem has been exacerbated by the third warmest and fifth driest summer since records began in 1910. The ban is expected to last all summer.
There are around 250 boreholes in the South East Water region that supply 75 per cent of the water in our county. Boreholes collect water that seeps through from the ground above. This is then pumped to the surface, treated and used for homes in the water region. Water levels are now 2.5 metres below the normal level for this time of year.
The water companies have asked customers to use water smartly and to cut down usage wherever possible by taking shorter showers for one example.