Northern Ireland has become the first place to introduce a hosepipe ban as water companies across the UK urged customers to conserve supplies.
People were asked not to use hosepipes or water sprinklers as the heatwave continued into the weekend.
Northern Ireland’s hosepipe began at 6pm on Friday and Severn Trent Water continued calls for people to be “careful with their water”.
According to the Met Office, the highest temperature on Friday was 32.5C (90.5F) in Porthmadog in north-west Wales, while the heatwave continued into the weekend with highs of 30C-31C (86F-87.8F) expected on Saturday.
This compares with average temperatures for the time of year of 17C (62.6F) in the north and 21C (69.8F) in the south, said senior forecaster Marco Petagna, who added: “There’s a lot of fine weather still to come.”
The recent hot spell has put a strain on utility companies, which have been pumping millions of litres into their systems.
NI Water chief executive Sara Venning said: “We have maximised our water production and need customers’ help to reduce demand. We are asking customers to take heed of the hosepipe ban and stop non-essential water use – using hoses and sprinklers is causing demand to exceed the capacity to supply.”
Severn Trent said: “We’re set for another hot weekend, and, with demand for water really high, we’re producing millions of extra litres.
“We’re asking customers to be careful with their water and for now avoid using the garden sprinkler or hosepipe.”
In some areas, gritters have been deployed to spread crushed rock dust on to melting roads to create a non-stick layer between the surface and vehicles.