#DayZero: Capetonians way off usage target as dam levels drop further

2018-01-29 14:22
Theewaterskloof. (iStock)

Theewaterskloof. (iStock)

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Cape Town - The threat of Day Zero, which is an increasing reality for Cape Town, is gaining ground, according to data on the latest dam levels released on Monday.

It indicates that dam levels for Cape Town are 26.3% as at January 29, 2018, from 26.6% at January 26, 2018.

The average daily water production of all water sources is at 580 ml/d compared to the target of 450ml/d.

If Day Zero does arrive on April 12 as predicted - though not mentioned in Monday's weekly update - taps will be cut off, except in the CBD and commercial and industrial zones.

Check out News24's special report on the water crisis

The City of Cape Town and the national Department of Water and Sanitation measure dam levels to check how much water is available for the region and whether water restrictions are necessary for residents and businesses.

The dam levels are critical for Cape Town's water supply and are a key contributor to the Day Zero water dashboard.

READ: Cape Town gears up for Day Zero

When levels drop to 13.5%, the city will begin to shut down its reticulation system in residential areas.

Residents will have to queue for water at about 180 communal water collection sites, according to the City of Cape Town's contingency plans for Day Zero.

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READ MORE: City gives all-clear for 186 water distribution points

Meanwhile, retailers are cashing in as panic-stricken Capetonians are buying bottled water in bulk.

Retailers have limited the sales of bottled water in Cape Town. (Adriaan Basson, News24)

Have a look at this infographic prepared by Digest to help people decide what they need potable water for and to manage it within their budget.

Purchasing water at R23 (currently the higher end of what Capetonians are forking out in the city) could see residents up spending about R20 000 on water for the next three months, according to Digest estimates.

READ: Cape Town retailers prepare for water stockpiling ahead of Day Zero

As speculation swirls around the practical implications of Day Zero, watch this video as the City of Cape Town's Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Social Services, JP Smith, answers some of your most pertinent questions.


Watch this video of ordinary residents sharing their thoughts on Day Zero.


ICYMI: Deputy Mayor Ian Neilson has taken charge of Cape Town's water crisis, but seemed stumped last week when News24's Aletta Harrison asked him some questions about Day Zero.

Read this piece by Ralph Mathekga in which he opines that the idea of people standing in line for water is not so depressing as for many South Africans it does not get more normal than that.

The poor have survived Day Zero for years

A couple of weeks ago I made two trips to Cape Town in which I became familiar with the looming water crisis in the city. While in the Mother City, I got to chat to a few people who reflected on how the water crisis was affecting them.

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Read more on:    cape town  |  drought  |  water crisis

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