Thames Water has printed hundreds of bumper stickers ansd handed them out to fleet and road drivers with the slogan “Proud to be Dirty” in an attempt to encourage drivers to stop washing their vehicles over the summer.
Restrictions brought in across the South East ban drivers from using hosepipes to wash their cars, patios, and the outside of houses.
Simon Evans, of Thames Water, said that as long as a car’s windows and lights are clean the rest of the chassis should be filthy.
“People should wear dirty cars like a badge of honour. You should be proud to have the dirtiest paintwork in Britain,” he said.
Mr Evans also said people should also be proud to have dusty patios and scorched lawns .
“It’s green to be brown!” he said.
The recommendations hark back to the last serious drought in Britain in 1976 when people were told to share a bath.
Although 30 per cent of water is used in flushing the toilet, there is no need to be unhygienic nowadays as bags of crystals in the cistern reduce the flush.
Water companies are ready to hand out water saving devices worth £50 per person such as tap inserts which aerate the water and make it go further and slow flow showerheads.
Water companies are also encouraging people to take part in the ‘short shower challenge’ by handing out egg timers so that people can restrict themselves to just 4 minutes of washing.
Staying in the shower for one minute longer uses 10 litres of water, while turning off the tap while you brush your teeth saves six litres.
Dirty dishes and soiled clothing should be allowed to build up so that the dishwasher and washing machine is only used when it is full.
Spraying muddy children with a hosepipe in the garden on a hot day is banned under the restrictions – although pets can be washed down if it is for ‘animal welfare’ reasons.
Gardeners are recommended to fit hose pipes from the washing machine and the bath to water the garden, which may not look very nice and leave a few soapsuds but will keep plants alive.
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