Don’t Let a Hosepipe Spoil Your Holiday Fun. Simple Ways to Keep Safe This Summer

WaterSafe is encouraging ‘staycationers’ making the most of the British weather this summer to keep safe when using their hosepipes.

The UK register of approved plumbers is advising anyone cooling off in the garden to avoid leaving hosepipes submerged in paddling pools and hot tubs, as well as garden ponds, buckets, watering cans and drains.

This is because hosepipes and outside taps not protected by a double check valve can allow dirty water to flow back into household drinking water supplies.

Dirty water in hosepipes can also cause illness such as Legionnaires’ disease, from harmful bacteria which can be breathed in when small droplets of water are sprayed through the air.

Julie Spinks, Director of WaterSafe, said: “As sunny weather looks set to make a welcome return in time for the summer holidays and travel abroad remains uncertain, many of us will be spending more time in the garden.

“Our advice is if you’re using a hosepipe, make sure you’re aware of the risks and the simple steps you can take to use it safely.

“If you’re not sure if your outside tap has a double check valve, our WaterSafe approved plumbers are happy to help and can also reassure you that you’re using the correct fittings on your hosepipe to avoid any contamination to your drinking water.”

The plumbing register, whose members are supported by all the UK water companies, also suggests:

  • Keeping hosepipes somewhere cool and out of the sun
  • Gently running water out of the hosepipe before using it – without any form of spray attachment on the end
  • Turning off taps and disconnecting hosepipes after using them.

It’s also important to think about saving water. Hosepipes typically use up to 1,000 litres of water, the equivalent of more than 12 baths, so it’s worth thinking about using a watering can instead, particularly if you pay bills based on metered charges.

The plumber register’s advice is supported by the The Royal Society for Public Health and included in the Met Office’s latest ‘WeatherReady’ campaign.

For more hosepipe safety advice visit watersafe.org.uk/hosepipe_safety and to find your nearest WaterSafe-approved plumber enter your postcode in our postcode search at the right.

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