UK urges water companies to take 'precautionary steps' to protect supplies

·1-min read
Cabinet meeting in Downing Street

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's environment minister George Eustice on Wednesday urged water companies to take precautions to protect water supplies and tackle the effects of the prolonged dry weather as another heatwave is forecast across the country.

Eustice met with the water company executives to discuss their ongoing response to protect water supplies and called on them to take necessary action such as fixing leaking pipes.

"I have urged them to take any precautionary steps needed to protect essential supplies as we go into a likely very dry autumn," Eustice said in a statement, adding that the country was experiencing it driest summer for 50 years.

"All water companies have reassured me that water supplies remain resilient across the country."

Last month, the British government said it had introduced the early stages of drought plans which involved using water carefully to protect supplies following record-breaking temperatures.

Two companies, Southern Water and South East Water, have already announced a temporary ban on the use of sprinklers and hosepipes in parts of England, as Britain's Met Office said July 2022 was the driest July for England since 1935.

(Reporting by Farouq Suleiman; editing by William James)