When I read this, I thought it was a Waterford Whispers News story. (Waterford Whispers News is an Irish satirical news website that usually hits the nail on the head with their brilliant headlines.) The announcement that made me think it is a joke was the announcement by Irish Water on Friday that from Monday 02 July a “hosepipe ban” would be in effect in the Greater Dublin area.

At first I thought it is Irish Water nonsense, but checking into it a bit more I realised that a piece of Irish Law really mentions that the “use of water drawn through a hosepipe” can be prohibited for the use of “watering a garden, watering recreational parks or sports grounds […], irrigating or spraying crops […], or washing a mechanically propelled vehicle or a trailer”.

Water conservation makes sense if there is a shortage and due to the idiotic way public water supplies in Ireland are ONLY served from surface water in lakes and reservoirs (instead of using water from underground sources) we are currently entering a period of water shortage. BUT a “hosepipe ban” just sounds like a ridiculous piece of law.

The ban will be in place for the whole month of July and if someone is found in breach of the ban, they could be fined EUR 125.

But here comes the interesting stuff:

While the wording above is taken from the “Water Services Act 2007”, Irish Water is NOT banning all wasteful water use. Instead they reduce the ban to “watering a garden, cleaning a private motor-vehicle using a domestic hosepipe. […], filling or maintaining a domestic swimming or paddling pool (except when using hand held containers filled directly from a tap), […]” so that means if you use a domestic hosepipe you are not allowed to clean the car, but if it is a commercial hosepipe, you can go ahead without any issues. It also means that your swimming pool must not be filled via hosepipe, but if there is a tap above the swimming pool OR if you get LOTS of big containers and fill it by hand, you are all above the law.