Water restrictions imposed in southern Swiss municipality

Inhabitants can be fined for using drinking water to water the garden, wash cars or fill swimming pools. © Keystone / Gaetan Bally

The inhabitants of Mendrisio in southern Switzerland have been banned from using drinking water from the tap for anything other than household purposes, after weeks of hot weather with no rain.

This content was published on July 17, 2022 minutes

Italian language radio and TV in the region (RSI) relayed appeals on Saturday evening to save water, reminding inhabitants that anyone using drinking water to water the garden, wash cars or fill swimming pools is liable to fines of up to CHF10,000 ($10,236).

The flow of water is no longer sufficient to some sources, RSI reported, citing the president of the Mendrisio municipality, Samuele Cavadini.

Mendrisio municipality is still watering public green spaces and sports fields. It explains on its website that the water used comes from underground water reservoirs and is not connected to the drinking water network.

Such measures are rare in Switzerland and federal hydrologists say the Alpine country has sufficient water reserves. The Federal Office for the Environment expects only localised shortages, according to the public broadcaster.

Weather service MeteoSuisse has issued another heat wave warning for Switzerland for next week, with temperatures expected to peak on Tuesday.

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