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New website tells you the water restrictions in your part of France

Just type your address in to find out whether you can do things like fill your swimming pool or water the garden

The website is one of the government’s measures to preserve water and limit the impact of droughts Pic: Kim7/ Shutterstock

A new website to help you find up-to-date information on water restrictions in your local area has been made available. 

Called Vigie Eau, it has a colour-coded map of France showing the latest rules regarding water usage.

It also has a search bar, where you can enter your address to find the rules in force in your commune.

The website lists activities (if any) that are prohibited and offers water-saving tips. 

The platform was one of 53 measures that the government announced in March to tackle France’s drought conditions.

“Of these 53 measures, 3 have been implemented and 39 initiated,” said France’s environment minister, Christophe Béchu.

It is hoped the map will help homeowners reduce their water usage and limit the impact of any droughts.

Site maps out up-to-date restrictions

The website can be found at

The map shows the five possible classifications, alongside a colour-coded map. 

The levels are: 

  • Pas des restrictions (no restrictions)
  • Vigilance (vigilance – no activities are usually banned at this level, but residents are asked to be conscious of water usage)
  • Alerte (alert)
  • Alerte renforcée (heightened alert)
  • Crise (crisis)

Department-wide restrictions can be put in place, but it is more common for individual communes to have their own restrictions tailored to their situation.

At the top of the page, there is a search bar for you to look up the restrictions in your commune – you just have to type in your address to find them.

After selecting your address, the level your commune is under is shown, alongside any potential restrictions.

The information on restrictions is split into five categories, which are:

  • Watering gardens and green spaces
  • Filling swimming pools and playing water-based games e.g water slides)
  • Cleaning your home and car
  • Using water for a fountain
  • Impact on building works

Not all categories will appear on all searches, as only restrictions currently in place are highlighted.

As a reminder: water can always be used for essential use (drinking and washing), but tips on how to reduce water waste can also be found on the website. 

The tips include advice for saving water in your house (installing special shower heads, only using the washing machine for full washes, etc), as well as when outside (installing rainwater collectors, planting water-resistant plants, watering your garden in the evening, etc). 

Read also: Leaks mean one-in-five litres of water in France is wasted, says study

Groundwater levels ‘very low’ in 20% of country 

Mr Bechu also spoke about groundwater levels – a vital source of clean water during summer – during the launch of the website.

Alongside 68% of water tables in France being lower than average, “20% of them are very low,” the minister said. 

“Overall, it's a little better than in 2022, but locally, in some regions, the situation is even more critical than last year… [for example] the situation in Brittany is better, but worse in the Parisian region,” he added. 

The website also shows the average water consumption per day in France (148 litres of water per day), as well as provides a tool to calculate your yearly water usage.

Read also

French public health body’s tips for staying hydrated this summer

This is how the French government plans to deal with future heatwaves

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