Map shows huge swathe of UK soon under hosepipe ban

Map shows huge swathe of UK soon under hosepipe ban

Up to 33 million people could be slammed with a hosepipe ban soon (Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

A new map shows the large swathes of England and Wales that will soon be under a hosepipe ban – affecting nearly 19 million people.

But this number could surge to 33 million as it’s reported that three more water companies are considering if restrictions are needed.

Five water companies have so far announced bans following the driest start to the year since 1976.

The largest comes from Thames Water, which said yesterday the exact date it comes into force will surface ‘in the coming weeks’.

The firm supplies an estimated 15 million people across the south east, including in London, Oxfordshire and parts of Surrey.

It follows announcements from Southern Water, South East Water, Welsh Water and Manx Water over the previous few weeks.

Flouting the new rule could lead to prosecution and a court fine of up to £1,000.

More hosepipe bans could be inevitable as the Met Office issues an amber warning for extreme heat – with drought feared as little rain is forecast.

Map shows huge swathe of UK soon under hosepipe ban

Friends Josie King and Yasmin Gunston sunbathe on the dry grass of Southampton Common (Picture: Jordan Pettitt/Solent News)

An internal Environment Agency document seen by MailOnline apparently suggests bosses at Yorkshire Water, which has five million customers, are considering one.

Severn Trent which serves eight million people, and South West, with up to two million customers, may also follow, it’s claimed.

The extreme heat warning- largely focused on southern England – will be in force from Thursday through until the end of Sunday.

Met Office Deputy Chief Meteorologist Dan Rudman said: ‘Temperatures are expected to peak at 35C on Friday and Saturday, or even an isolated 36C on Saturday.

‘Elsewhere will see temperatures widely into the high 20s and low 30s Celsius.  

‘Coupled with the high daytime temperatures there will be some warm nights, with temperatures expected not to drop below the low 20s Celsius for some areas in the south.’

First to introduce a hosepipe ban was Manx Utilities, with it coming in on July 29 following an ‘extremely dry period’.

Then came Southern Water, with a temporary use ban starting on August 5 for around 1.5 million people in parts of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

Bosses insisted there is no direct risk to customers’ water supplies but urged them to ‘act responsibly’ as they announced the measure.

Map shows huge swathe of UK soon under hosepipe ban

The sun rising over a half empty Dovestone Reservoir in Greenfield, Greater Manchester, England (Picture: Matthew Lofthouse/SWNS)

South East Water was next up with a ‘temporary useage ban’ on hosepipes and spinklers due to start this Friday.

Impacting two million people, it means people in Kent and Sussex join those unable to use hosepipes to water gardens, clean cars or fill ponds or swimming pools.

The company said on Wednesday morning they had been left ‘with no choice’ but to introduce the rule.

Welsh Water will impose a temporary usage ban, or hosepipe ban, in Pembrokeshire from 19 August.

Meanwhile, Thames Water customers are awaiting an exact date.

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