Level 4 water restrictions – what does this mean for Cape Town residents?

By Richard van Rensburg
10 May 2017

Level 4 involves much stricter measures regarding the use of potable water.

As the drought continues, Capetonians are faced with even stricter restrictions on water use.

The City of Cape Town is now considering level 4  water restrictions from the beginning of June, said Xanthea Limberg, Cape Town's mayoral committee member responsible for water and waste services.

These restrictions, depending on the approval of councils, will likely mean higher water tariffs.

The latter may come into force by the beginning of July, with the start of the local government's new 2017/18 fiscal year.

" For example, where the current level 3B allows for limited garden water on certain days, all such external uses of potable water with level 4 will be completely banned," Xanthea explained.

It also includes the filling up of swimming pools.

"We are really looking into more ways to drastically reduce the use of potable water."

The council will inform residents about the details of the new measures, once it they've been approved.

Last week, the levels of the main dams serving the Cape Peninsula stood at just over 22 percent. Since the last 10 percent of dam water is unusable, it means that the dam levels are effectively only at about 12 percent.

Cape Town rain forecast

At the beginning of this week, the South African Weather Service predicted a 60 percent chance of rainfall on Thursday, which could reach a 10 mm rainfall.

But it will hardly be a drop in an already empty ocean. Observers are very concerned because the heavy, long-lasting rain that the Cape so badly needs is unlikely to start.

Meanwhile, in any event, Capetonians will have to survive with water restrictions until dam levels reach 85 per cent again.

Dam level countrywide

Last week, according to the national department of water and sanitation, the national dam levels countrywide looked like this:

Western Cape - 21 percent

KZN - 54 percent

Eastern Cape - 62 percent

Limpopo - 79 percent

Mpumalanga - 79 percent

Free State - 85 percent

North West - 90 percent

Gauteng - 92 percent

Northern Cape - 98 percent

Additional sources: : Capetown.gov.zaCape Talk. Department of Water and Sanitation

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