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Welsh Water reminds customers to use water wisely 

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WELSH WATER customers are being asked to continue using water efficiently to help the company maintain water supplies and protect the environment as the current dry spell is set to continue through July and into August.

June was the hottest on record in Wales with only 24% of long term average rainfall during the month.  With the heatwave now set to continue and only limited rainfall predicted over the next few weeks, WelshWater is working  closely with water watchdog Consumer Council for Water and Natural Resources Wales to remind customers that using water wisely will not only help protect supplies for customers but also help the wider environment.  Many of the company’s upland reservoirs are used to release extra water into rivers during these conditions to increase river levels and protect local wildlife.

The company is now spending an extra £1.5 million a week to safeguard water supplies for its three million customers across most of Wales, Herefordshire and Deeside. It has already taken extensive action to prepare for and manage this prolonged dry period including:

  • 450 people working 7 days a week to find and fix 140 leaks a day (80 in normal conditions). Whilst leakage has been halved in the last 10 years and is currently at an all-time low, customers are being encouraged to report leaks to Welsh Water as the company will also repair customers’ pipes free of charge if they have a leak;
  • deploying 40 tankers to move water around the network and installing temporary pipelines and pumping stations to help keep customers in supply where we have seen huge increases in demand; and
  • pumping over 1 billion litres a day  into the network over the past 15 days. This is 25% more than usual amount of water put into the network every day.

 Customers are being urged to use water wisely:

  • Take a break from watering the garden – the lawn will grow back quickly once it starts to rain
  • Take a short shower instead of a bath
  • Don’t leave the tap running when brushing your teeth
  • Always make sure any washing machines and dishwashers are full

 Managing Director of Water Services, Ian Christie, said:  “The level of water consumption has reached record levels in recent weeks. This is not surprising after the record temperatures in June and the continued lack of any substantial rainfall in July.

“These challenging weather conditions are set to continue, and behind the scenes, we’re working day and night to maintain supplies by finding and fixing leaks, using our integrated pipe network to move water around and also using tankers to feed into our network directly.

“We’d like to thank customers for working with us and urge them to continue reporting any leaks and follow the advice we have issued on how to use water efficiently so that we can help protect water supplies also play our part in safeguarding the local environment.”

Natalie Hall, Water Manager for Natural Resources Wales, said:“We’re responsible for securing the proper use of natural resources in Wales and making sure there is enough water available for all needs including the environment and people.

“We’re seeing some very low flows in our rivers and low rainfall totals across Wales during this prolonged period of dry weather and there are concerns that water quality and the environment will suffer if the dry weather continues through the summer.

“Every drop of water we use is taken from rivers or groundwater, so we are asking people to conserve water as much as they can.

“Saving water is something anyone can do and doing things differently can make a big difference – like having a shower instead of a bath, turning taps off when brushing your teeth, reducing sprinkler use and using water butts.”

Tom Taylor, Wales Chair for the Consumer Council for Water, said:“Customers are much more willing to use water wisely if they can see their water company is going the extra mile to maintain a reliable supply of water, so we’re pleased Welsh Water is taking exactly the sort of action we would expect.”

“With no end in sight to the hot weather, we’d urge people across Wales to keep playing their part by making every drop of water count in the home and garden. Customers can soak up some great tips on our website and Welsh Water’s too – it’s amazing the difference small changes can make.”

 

Saving water in the GARDEN

 

·         Use a watering can or handheld hose pipe instead of a garden sprinkler

·         Fit a hose trigger gun when using a hose, available from our Product Portal

·         Add water retention crystals to pots, tubs and hanging baskets to help keep compost moist, available here on our Product Portal

·         Don’t cut lawns too short and save the clippings to use as mulch to improve soil health

 

 

Saving water in the BATHROOM

 

·         Take a shower and reduce the number of baths you have

·         Put the plug in the basin when you wash and use the collected water instead

·         Don’t leave the tap running when brushing your teeth

·         Always make sure taps are turned off fully

·         Fix a water efficient showerhead

·         Fix any leaking taps to avoid wasted water

·         If you are installing a new bathroom, always choose water efficient products

 

Saving water in the KITCHEN

 

·         Use a washing up bowl when washing up

·         Fix any leaking taps

·         Wait until you have a full load before doing your washing

·         Only fill the kettle with the water you need

·         If you are purchasing a new appliance which uses water, be sure to check how waterefficient it is

 

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Buckingham palace announces Prince Philip’s funeral arrangements

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PRINCE PHILIP’S royal ceremonial funeral will take place April 17 at Windsor Castle — a slimmed-down service amid the COVID-19 pandemic that will be entirely closed to the public.

Philip, also known as the Duke of Edinburgh, took part in planning his funeral and its focus on family was in accordance with his wishes. The 99-year-old duke, who died Friday, also took part in designing the modified Land Rover that will carry his coffin.

“Although the ceremonial arrangements are reduced, the occasion will still celebrate and recognize the duke’s life and his more than 70 years of service to the Queen, the UK and the Commonwealth,” a palace spokesman said Saturday while speaking on condition of anonymity in line with policy.

Prince Harry, Philip’s grandson who stepped away from royal duties last year and now lives in California, will attend the service along with other members of the royal family. His wife, the Duchess of Sussex, who is pregnant, has been advised by her doctor not to attend.

Palace officials said the ceremony would be conducted strictly in line with the British government’s COVID-19 guidelines, which restrict the number of people attending funerals to 30. They declined to say whether the royal family would be required to wear masks.

The palace appealed to the public not to gather in Windsor, and for those who wished to pay their respects to Philips to stay at home instead.

“While there is sadness that the public will not be able to physically be part of events to commemorate the life of the duke, the royal family asks that anyone wishing to express their condolences do so in the safest way possible and not by visiting Windsor or any other royal palaces to pay their respects,″ the palace spokesman said. “The family’s wish is very much that people continue to follow the guidelines to keep themselves and others safe.”

The announcement comes after military teams across the U.K. and on ships at sea fired 41-gun salutes Saturday to mark the death of Philip, honouring the former naval officer and husband of Queen Elizabeth II whom they considered one of their own.

Batteries in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast — the capitals of the four nations that make up the United Kingdom — as well as other cities around the U.K. and the Mediterranean outpost of Gibraltar fired the volleys at one-minute intervals beginning at midday. Ships including the HMS Montrose, a frigate patrolling the Persian Gulf, offered their own salutes.

“The Duke of Edinburgh served among us during the Second World War, and he remained devoted to the Royal Navy and the Armed Forces as a whole,” Gen. Nick Carter, chief of the defence staff, said in a statement. “A life well-lived. His Royal Highness leaves us with a legacy of indomitable spirit, steadfastness and an unshakeable sense of duty.”

Members of the Commonwealth, a group of 54 countries headed by the monarch, were also invited to honour Philip. The Australian Defence Force began its salute at 5 p.m. local time outside Parliament House in Canberra, and New Zealand planned to offer its own tribute on Sunday.

Philip joined the Royal Navy as a cadet in 1939 and once had a promising military career. In 1941, he was honoured for his service during the battle of Cape Mattapan off the coast of Greece, when his control of searchlights aboard the HMS Valiant allowed the battleship to pinpoint enemy vessels in the dark. Philip rose to the rank of commander before he retired from active duty.

Two years after the war ended, Philip married Elizabeth at Westminster Abbey when she was 21 and he was 26. Philip’s naval career came to an abrupt end when King George VI died in 1952 and his wife became queen.

At the queen’s coronation in 1953, Philip swore to be his wife’s “liege man of life and limb” and settled into a life supporting the monarch. The couple had four children — Charles, the heir to the throne, Anne, Andrew and Edward.

Before he retired from official duties in 2017, the prince carried out more than 22,000 solo public engagements and supported over 780 organizations, including the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for young people.

Members of the public continued to honour Philip’s life of service on Saturday, leaving flowers outside Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle despite appeals from authorities and the royal family to refrain from gathering.

“I think everyone would like to pay their respects,” Maureen Field, 67, said outside Windsor Castle. “Because of the virus, a lot of people have to stay away. He didn’t want a big funeral. He wanted a very private time with his family to say their goodbyes. So, we’ve all got to respect that.”

Mike Williams, 50, travelled from his home in Surrey, southwest of London, to Buckingham Palace to honour the prince.

“He’s a massive loss to the country and to the world, I think, so we wanted to come and pay respects,” Williams said. “I don’t know what it achieves, but it just felt like the right thing to do.”

(Associated Press, London – by James Brooks and Tom Rayner)

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Police: RNLI ‘most likely saved man’s life’ following tombstoning incident

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POLICE have issued an urgent warning following a tombstoning incident Tenby on Saturday evening (Apr 10).

A multi-agency operation was launched just after 6pm following reports of a man in difficulty after jumping from cliffs into the sea.

A spokesperson for Dyfed-Powys police told The Herald: “We were called to the beach opposite St Catherine’s Island at around 6.15pm today, where a man had got into difficulty after jumping off the cliff into the water.

“On the arrival of officers, RNLI were at the scene and were administering CPR to the 23-year-old who was unconscious and not breathing.

“Fortunately, he regained consciousness shortly after and was taken to hospital for assessment.

Inspector Gavin Howells added: “This incident highlights the serious danger posed by tombstoning or cliff jumping, and the potentially life-threatening consequences.

“We urge people not to take part in this sort of activity anywhere along our coastline, and not to put themselves or the emergency services at risk for a thrill.

“We would like to thank our colleagues at the RNLI for their swift response to this incident, and for their actions which most likely saved this man’s life.”

RNLI Tenby posted on Facebook the following: “The Georgina Taylor was launched after person seen in difficulty in water

“Tenby’s RNLI inshore lifeboat was launched at around 6.25pm on Saturday, following a report of somebody in difficulty in the sea off Castle Beach.

“The volunteer crew were quickly on scene and immediately saw the casualty, who had been pulled from the water and was on the rocks.

“The casualty was taken from the rocks and into the lifeboat, where Casualty Care was administered whilst the helmsman made best speed to the harbour.

“As the lifeboat was entering the harbour, an ambulance was arriving at the slipway.

“The crew then assisted the ambulance personnel in getting the casualty onto the stretcher and into the ambulance, before re-housing the lifeboat.

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Health

Police and drugs advice service issue warning over ‘deadly batch’ of heroin

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POLICE have asked the media to issue a warning over a batch of heroin.

The drug circulating in west Wales, first detected in Llanelli, is particularly dangerous, it has been confirmed.

“We are warning drug users to take extra care following reports of a particularly harmful batch of heroin circulating in the Llanelli area” said a Dyfed-Powys Police spokesperson.

“We have reasons to believe some drugs being distributed and used in the Carmarthenshire area at present have been contaminated with other substances and could be extremely dangerous for anyone taking them.

“We would also appeal to drug users to seek medical attention immediately if they become unwell.

“Please share this information with anyone you believe could come into contact with these drugs.

”In an emergency or if you think someone’s life is at risk always dial 999.”

Earlier this week Barod, the drug and alcohol abuse service reported a dangerous and toxic heroin circulating in Pembroke Dock which a spokesperson described as being ‘potentially deadly’.

To comes as Public Health England issued a formal alert about the risks of heroin containing fentanyl or carfentanyl.

The warning reads: “There is significant evidence from a small number of post-mortem results of recent drug user deaths and from police seizures that some heroin may contain fentanyl or carfentanyl added by dealers.

“These are highly potent synthetic opioids and very small amounts can cause severe or even fatal toxicity.

“Those of you in contact with heroin users should be alert to the increased possibility of overdose arising from heroin cut with these synthetic opioids, be able to recognise possible symptoms of overdose and respond appropriately.”

The fentanyls are a group of synthetic opioids; some have legitimate uses while others are illicit drugs.

Fentanyl is about 100 times more potent than morphine and is a licensed medicine used to treat severe and terminal pain. Carfentanyl is 4,000 – 10,000 times more potent than morphine and principally used as an animal tranquilliser.

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