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Tough water restrictions have been issued for 20 million UK residents in light of worsening drought in England.
The restrictions, including a "hosepipe ban" on a range of outdoor water usage, follow two years of low rainfall that has left reservoirs at record low volumes, the UK's Daily Mail website said on Monday.
Photos posted on the website showed dry stream beds.
No fewer than seven water companies, serving London and, more broadly, the South and East of England, have taken the drastic measures, which will take effect on April 5.
This action has followed combined fall/winter rainfall of only 62 to 75 percent of normal within the region's key watersheds.
Lifting of the restrictions would then be contingent upon persistent above-normal rainfall over at least several weeks. Barring this, restrictions could last indefinitely.
The ongoing drought has raised the specter of the 1976 drought, which coincided with the driest summer in 200 years, the Daily Mail said. At that time, severe water shortages dried taps, and wildlife and crops suffered.
Below-normal rainfall will linger through at least the two weeks, AccuWeather.com meteorologists believe.
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While it has already been abnormally hot in the southern Plains since the start of May, Mother Nature is getting ready to crank up the heat yet another notch this week.
Hot and dry summer weather is expected to persist in the western U.S. this week, perpetuating the wildfire threat and risk of heat-related illness.
In the wake of showers and thunderstorms that will enhance the risk of flash flooding, cooler air will invade the northeastern United States by midweek.
Beryl has redeveloped well off the coast of the mid-Atlantic, but is not expected to have major impacts on land.
While the southeastern U.S. is no stranger to humid, stormy conditions, widespread wet weather will be more disruptive than usual this week.
In the aftermath of the disastrous and historic flooding across western Japan, survivors and recovery crews will continue to face sweltering heat and humidity.
In the United States, more people have died from being left in hot cars than from lightning strikes so far this year.
A mudslide and a freight train derailment led to the closure of U.S. 95 near the Nevada-California state line on Friday.