Residents of Ekurhuleni municipality are asked to get prepared as the municipality council plans to shut down water cross its territories from the night of Monday, 7 November.
Concerned by the unimproved water condition in the state despite recent rainfalls, the water department in Ekurhuleni municipality said it will implement water rationing across its territories, cutting all water supplies between 21h00 and 05h00 daily.
This means water will seize flowing in the affected areas during the periods mentioned above and if these measures do not achieve the required 15% saving, the City said it will also move to ration water during the day.
“Water rationing measures will initially be implemented every night starting from Monday, 7 November 2016. This means that there will be no water during this period in the affected areas. If these measures do not achieve the required 15 percent, the city will ration water during the day as well,” the metro said.
The city said on Friday that it “has no choice but to take a drastic move as voluntary water saving measures by residents have averaged a savings rate of about 3.5% a week‚ a far cry from the required 15%”.
“Recent rains have not significantly improved water levels [therefore] the country needs good rainfall for an extended period to come out of the drought of recent years,” the department noted.
So far, about 3 000 business units and 41 000 households have exceeded their allocated water usage, the City said. Penalties levied during the month of October amount to R1.7 million.
The Department of Water and Sanitation said it will release reserve water supply on Monday from the Free State’s Sterkfontein Dam to boost the nearly empty Vaal Dam in Gauteng.
“The plan is to release water before the Vaal Dam drops below 25% depending on the rate that the dam is dropping. The water will be released into the Nuwejaarspruit which joins the Wilge River in the outskirts of Harrismith flowing into the Vaal Dam. The release will be done in such a way to avoid flooding,” said spokesman Sputnik Ratau.
The water department had declared the Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and the North West disaster areas following the unchanging effect of drought in the land, especially in those areas.
Like in Ekurhuleni Municipality, the city of Tshwane’s water restrictions also saw residents of Soshanguve left without water on Sunday. The reservoir levels had dropped dramatically due to high usage.
The city said the water supply was cut off in the area to allow reservoirs to recover. Water tanks were delivered to affected areas in the township.