This morning I woke to an urgent text from my mother warning me that there were problems with the water supply in my area. Worried, I went to the website for our water supply company to read their ‘special situation report’.
It turned out that the torrential rain we've been having had overwhelmed their system and some rainwater had flooded a chlorine treatment tank and the resultant mixture had got into the supply before the system could be shut down. There was no need to panic, the water company advised, just to boil water for drinking and washing until further notice. They also advised anyone who felt ill to ring NHS Direct!
This whole exercise has left me feeling that I’ve got a taste of the future, of how things could be here in the South East if drought strikes and worsens. I am reduced to spending my mornings boiling large kettles full of water and then pouring the water to cool into various receptacles. No longer can I just rely on a tap when my children ask for a drink, or to clean their teeth. I am suddenly hugely aware of the amount of water we get through and the time it takes to purify.
Maybe everyone should have a scare like this to heighten awareness of water waste and how precious a commodity it is.