Warning: Use water only for drinking, cooking, washing

Monday, May 15, 2017

Pretoria – The City of Cape Town has warned its residents and businesses against the use of non-essential municipal water as it is faced with a drought crisis.

“We are essentially saying that you are only allowed to use a bit of water for drinking, cooking and washing. We are reaching a critical point in this drought crisis,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services; and Energy, Councillor Xanthea Limberg, on Monday.

Dam levels in the city are now at 21.2% (storage levels), which is 0.8% down from a week ago.

On Tuesday, the City’s Mayoral Committee is expected to recommend to Council the implementation of Level 4 water restrictions.

This will entail a ban on all use of municipal water for outside and non-essential purposes.

“Although we continue to work non-stop to force consumption down, overall use remains catastrophically high. This is not a request. We have seen huge saving-efforts, but the unseasonably hot autumn is exacerbating the situation and we must all do more,” Councillor Limberg said.

She said all consumers must use below 100 litres per day. Residents have been urged to stop flushing toilets when not necessary, shower for less than two minutes a day or use a wet cloth for a ‘wipe-down’.

Furthermore, residents are encouraged to collect all would-be wasted water and use it to fill up toilet cisterns, among others.

The city said dredging operations have started at the Voëlvlei Dam to prepare for low-level extraction of water.

The City is engaging with the lead authority, the National Department of Water and Sanitation, as a matter of urgency to request dredging operations at Theewaterskloof Dam too.

“In a severe drought such as what we are dealing with, the only real immediate intervention is to cut usage. Over this coming week, we must bring consumption down with 100 million litres of water per day.

“The City also warns businesses to start implementing contingency and alternative water measures in their own operations,” said Councillor Limberg.

The City said it is continuing with its pressure reduction programmes across the metro which forcibly reduces supply at a given time.

Other emergency interventions are underway, and if required, the City will start to implement a lifeline supply of water across the metro. – SAnews.gov.za


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