29/10/2018

Hosepipe Ban Apology As NI Water Exceeds Legal Powers

Bosses at NI Water have issued an apology to customers over the hosepipe ban, after it was discovered the firm acted beyond it's legal powers.

The restrictions were in place from June 29 to July 19 across Northern Ireland, as the water provider struggled to cope with the soaring temperatures that reached highs of 30C.

Customers were asked to limit their use of tap water to the essentials like drinking, cooking and washing.

NI Water also banned the use of hosepipes for various functions, including car-washing, watering plants, filling or maintaining a swimming or paddling pool or cleaning around domestic premises.
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Four months later, the company has apologised and said that "at no time did it seek to mislead the public", after a review found the ban to be in excess of their legal powers.

It is understood the firm used a law that does not apply in Northern Ireland, as it has not been updated to be in line with the rest of the UK.

"NI Water now accepts that it's interpretation of Article 116 was too broad and that it therefore had sought to ban certain activities that were not envisaged under the legislation," the statement said.

The company also explained that it's primary aim during the time of the water supply issues "was to ensure all customers remained in supply and that businesses could function efficiently".



(JG/MH)

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