Hankey, Patensie face water crisis

2017-07-06 06:00

HANKEY and Patensie households will soon be left without water, should the Kouga Municipality be unable to secure alternative water resources within days.

Starting from July 17, the municipality will be allowed to pump water from the canals for only ten hours per day - rendering the two towns without a steady supply of water for an indefinite period of time.

This new restriction follows after the annual water allocations for Hankey and Patensie were depleted earlier this year.

According to Kouga Executive Mayor Elza van Lingen, the municipality needs to extract water from the canals for a minimum of 18 hours per day to keep the reservoirs full and meet the demand of households, schools and businesses.

“If we are allowed only 10 hours, the reservoirs will run dry and many households will be left without water,” says Van Lingen.

“In the past, the municipality was able to use water from the Klein River to supply the affected areas with water during their annual two-week “dry period”. However, due to the continuing drought the river became stagnant and the water is unsafe. We therefore had to cart water in from Humansdorp. Using trucks to supply an entire town with water is tough when you have to do it for two weeks. Having to do so for months or years is completely unsustainable.”

Van Lingen assures the affected communities that the municipality is in negotiation with the Gamtoos Irrigation Board and relevant roleplayers to prevent this new restriction from developing into a crisis.

“Securing extra water resources such as boreholes for Hankey and Patensie has also been prioritised.”

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