The Department of Water and Sanitation in the Free State has made a clarion call to consumers to continue using water sparingly. This comes as water levels drop in storage dams due to the heatwave conditions experienced countrywide.The department has pointed out that the blistering heat during the summer months causes a high rate of evaporation at storage dams and reservoirs. The latest report on storage dams in the province shows the level of some dams has decreased to below 35%. These are: the Kalkfontein Dam (23,7%), located near Koffiefontein; the Rustfontein Dam (25,9%), which is near Botshabelo; and the Groothoek Dam (30,2%), located near Thaba Nchu. The Sterkfontein Dam, which is near Harrismith, is at 91,5%; Gariep Dam, located between Bethulie and Colesberg, is at 74,4%; while the Krugersdrift Dam near Bloemfontein is at 78,6%. “Climate change contributes to the rising heat, which in turn leads to high evaporation rates and the decrease of water in storage dams. “Residents should bear in mind that every drop of water counts if everyone works together to save water. “Residents should repair leaks in toilets and taps and only flush the toilet when necessary. “They should take a shower instead of a bath,” said Larry Crisp, spokesperson of the provincial department.Residents are encouraged to always use a bucket instead of a hose to water gardens or to wash vehicles. “Reuse grey water in the garden instead of fresh treated water,” he said. Crisp said residents should reconsider filling swimming pools during this crisis period. As part of saving water, a restriction on the use of water still applies for consumers within the Mangaung Metro Municipality.