Nine areas in the Eure are affected with people being told they cannot use water from wells and under ground sources to wash cars, water gardens or fill swimming pools. Businesses are also affected by the order issued by the prefecture.
An Eure prefecture spokesman said that a lack of rain in June and July has led to the need to save water. River levels are low, particularly the Eure, Iton and Avre, and ground water levels are below normal.
The restrictions have been introduced for the valley around the upper Avre and the middle of the Eure valley. Other parts of the valleys around the three rivers are either on alert or being ordered to be vigilant.
â€˜The weather conditions since the beginning of July have led to a lack of significant rainfall and higher temperatures. A series of measures last month found water levels had decreased and water restrictions are now being put in place,â€™ said the spokesman.
â€˜Weather forecasts indicate that conditions are likely to continue to be dry and warm and in this context there is a need to be vigilant,â€™ he added.
The restrictions are likely to be adjusted regularly according to water levels and will spread out from the initial bans as needed. Farmers are permitted to use water needed for animals.
â€˜The restrictions apply to all users, individuals, communities and businesses and cover all uses of water from rivers and their flood plains,â€™ the order says.
â€˜The restrictions cover washing vehicles, watering private gardens, parks, sports fields, and golf courses, including for professional and industrial users,â€™ it continues.
â€˜These controls do not apply to the use of water from the public drinking water supply,â€™ it adds.
Lots of people in rural Normandy use wells and streams for watering gardens and washing cars as it is free unlike the public water supply which is metered.