Isle of Man water supplier Manx Utilities are introducing a temporary hosepipe ban after prolonged dry weather left reservoir levels unusually low.
The ban will come into action on June 5.
The company say it is being introduced due to the extremely dry period the Island has been experiencing, with long spells of sunshine from mid-March. The small periods of rainfall have yielded little in terms of topping up the Island’s reservoirs and demand has increased.
The IOM Meteorological Office confirmed spring 2020 as the driest since 1984 with only 78.7mm of rainfall compared to the long-term average of 172mm, and with predictions of continued often warmer than average weather through the coming months.
Manx Utilities are asking residents to consider ”wise” choices for water use. Washing hands is a priority, during lockdown, in addition to ensuring availability of clean drinking water. Jet-washing a drive, watering a garden with a hosepipe, washing are being ruled ”not essential for life,” and Manx residents are being urged to ”cherish every single drop.”
Manx Utilities also says it will not hesitate to take action to manage the Island’s decreasing water stocks. It has the power to prosecute individuals for non-compliance with the ban and to impose fines of up to £2,000.
Chairman Tim Baker MHK said, “I doubt this has come as a surprise to many people given the very warm and dry weather our Island has enjoyed recently.
”This Temporary Use Ban supplements that reduction and together these actions will help preserve our water supplies. We expect rainfall to continue below usual levels in the coming weeks and it is essential to safeguard the raw water stocks at our reservoirs. We know that our Island can respond extremely well when challenged and I am sure the Manx people will understand the need for this action and respond accordingly.”
Manx residents can get more information about water usage here.