Peterborough residents urged to ‘avoid flushing toilet regularly’ during ‘dry January’

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Peterborough residents are being encouraged to flush the toilet less and not to wash their car as a ‘dry January’ has left reservoirs at a lower level than normal.

The East of England has seen lower than average rainfall at the start of 2019 - but despite the on-going dry weather Anglian Water says its water supplies are secure and the company’s engineers are already working to maintain and strengthen their water resource levels across the East of England, in preparation for next summer.

Public toilet charges will be imposed in a few weeks time.

Public toilet charges will be imposed in a few weeks time.

Head of Water Resources for Anglian Water, Hannah Stanley-Jones said: “When it’s dull and grey outside it’s easy to not notice that in fact it hasn’t rained that much. But the reality is, during the long hot dry spell the region only had 54% of the average rainfall, and we have only had 89% of the long term average since then which is not sufficient to recover from the low levels.

“The rain in early December certainly helped to bolster our supplies, with average reservoir levels currently at around 78%, our supplies are secure. But coming after what was an exceptionally long dry summer, we haven’t seen the recovery in groundwater levels that we would normally expect for this time of year.”

However, to keep water levels at the expected residents are being urged to do all they can to avoid wasting water.

Advice from Anglian Water includes:

Fix dripping taps

Lag pipes to prevent them bursting

Take shorter showers, or shallower baths

Don’t wash cars

Avoid flushing the toilet regularly

Anglian Water has also ploughed extra resources into a programme of work this winter to ensure its equipment is in tip top shape to make the most of the water available following the hot, dry summer last year.

Hannah added “Our teams are currently undertaking a programme of work including things like cleaning our underground boreholes to ensure they can work at full capacity to get the water we need.

“The East of England is the driest region in the country and we are used to periods with little rainfall. We undertake this kind of work every winter but with rain levels below average for this time of year it is essential that extra steps are taken to ensure water provisions remain strong for the rest of the year and the warmer months ahead. We are also putting more resources than ever into driving down leakage in our pipe network, with extra teams deployed to find and fix leaks.

“Our customers are already some of the most water savvy in the country. On average each of us use 133 litres each per day compared to the national average of about 140-145 litres. That equates to the difference of about 4million toilet flushes every day. There is always more we can all do to use water wisely, all year round. If we all save a bit now, there will be enough for summer fun later in the year.”