With people adhering to government advice and staying at home since mid-March in response to the Covid-19 crisis, we can confirm that there has been a significant increase in household water usage.
New domestic metering data has revealed that households are using an additional 24 litres of water per person per day, a 20% increase from February. This is in line with data from other UK water utilities who have reported an increase of 27 litres per person per day.
Non-domestic water usage has decreased with many businesses, construction sites, schools, colleges, gyms, hotels, bars and restaurants temporarily closed. This reduction in demand has helped to off-set some of the domestic demand, however as domestic demand represents two thirds of our business, our water supply is still under pressure.
In addition, when Government restrictions are lifted, many commercial premises will need to use extra water to clean and flush their plumbing systems and storage tanks or to complete deep cleans, while water usage in homes will continue to remain higher than normal.
As water treatment plants are already working to their maximum capacity, we are appealing to the public to prioritise handwashing over powerwashing and conserve water now where they can, so that together we can meet the increased demands on our network when restrictions are relaxed for businesses.
There are some simple measures that you can take including stopping the use of powerwashers at home for cosmetic purposes; using a watering can rather than a hose in the garden; taking showers over baths; and fixing any dripping taps where it is possible to do so. View our Conservation section for helpful tips and find out how much water you can save at home, in your business and on the farm.