Thames Water appeals to golf clubs for 'restraint' during heat wave

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With warm weather anticipated for the weekend and beyond, Thames Water has appealed to golf clubs in BB&O to reduce the amount of mains water they use, with the threat of water restrictions later in the year.

Thames Water's water efficiency manager, Andrew Tucker, explained that a combination of hot weather and more people at home during the day time means water use across Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Surrey and Buckinghamshire could reach "unprecedented levels" over the next few days.

Andrew added: "As we all continue to follow government guidelines on COVID-19, most customers are staying home, using more water than usual for hygiene and to keep cool. During these hot, dry days, we're asking all businesses to please take action to reduce their water consumption.

"Right now, we're not looking to impose any temporary use restrictions, but the surge in demand could mean low pressure or interruptions to local water supplies during peak times."

Despite a wet start to the year, Thames Water has recorded less than 69& of average rainfall from May to July. Although there storage levels are "good", Andrew explained that at peak times on hot days customers are using water faster than it can be safely treated and pumped to homes and businesses. This reduces reservoir levels, as has been seen elsewhere in the UK.

Thames Water has produced guidance for golf clubs that can help maintain water production and supply levels and avoid having to consider water restrictions later in the year.

Key things you can do to help are:

  • Reduce the total volume of mains water your course is using
  • Use non-potable or alternative water sources where possible
  • Stop or reduce heavy mains water using peak times, between 7am and 11pm
  • Stop irrigation during the middle of hot, sunny days
  • Check for leaks on toilets, taps and urinals. Even a small constant dribble can waste up to 400 litres a day, as much as a family of four's total daily use
  • Stop urinals from flushing overnight. Even if you don't have sensors fitted, turning off the flow to the urinals could save thousands of litres every day
  • Educate your staff about saving water. They're usually disassociated from your business and might not be thinking about water efficiency as they work.

Thames Water has installed equipment at several water treatment sites to increase how quickly it can treat water and pump it out, with staff working around the clock to reduce how much water is lost through leaks. Over the past year, Thames Water has repaired a "record" number of leaks, reducing wastage by 15 per cent across the 20,000-mile network of pipes.

Thames Water is also supporting the national 'Water's Worth Saving' campaign, encouraging households and businesses to use water wisely, whether at home or at work, to reduce pressure on supplies and save money on bills.

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