Police beg people to stop ringing 999 to call out neighbours using hosepipes
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With temperatures soaring over recent weeks, drastic measures have been taken to help save water supplies in certain parts of the country.
It was announced earlier this month that the South East and the Isle of Wight were introducing hosepipe bans, meaning they cannot be used to water plants, clean cars or fill paddling pools.
Further bans are set to come into force later this month, with South West Water announcing a ban in Cornwall and parts of north Devon from 23 August.
However, despite the ban not even starting yet, Devon and Cornwall Police says people are already snitching on their neighbours, with the force receiving more than 1,000 calls a day.
Assistant Chief Constable Nikki Leaper urged people to stop bothering them with complaints about the hosepipe bans.
She said: "We are also already getting calls from people reporting breaches of the hosepipe ban due to come in next week – which should be directed to the water company.
"All these issues should be dealt with by other agencies. There is a list of these agencies on our website, so please check online before you call us."
A National Police Chiefs’ Council spokesman added: "Breaches of hosepipe bans are a civil matter and should not be reported to the police.
"Any member of the public who has concerns about a potential breach should consider the advice from their water provider."
Thames Water has also confirmed that it too will be introducing a hosepipe ban for customers on 24 August.
This is the sixth supplier to implement restrictions, with Southern Water (5 August), South East Water (12 August) and Yorkshire Water (26 August) announcing measures.
Welsh Water's ban also came into force yesterday (19 August), affecting customers in Pembrokeshire and parts of Carmarthenshire.
The Met Office revealed that the UK saw just 56 percent (46.3mm) of its average rainfall last month, which makes the driest July in over 20 years and the same for England since 1935.
Regions in the south and east were particularly impacted, with just 17 percent of its average rainfall, a figure that hasn't been recorded since 1836.
And the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) confirmed that parts of the country would be moved intro drought status.
The areas affected currently are:
- Devon and Cornwall
- East Anglia
- Herts and North London
- Kent and South London
- Northamptonshire and East Midlands
- Solent and South Downs