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Day Zero is here: Port Elizabeth taps run dry as drought brings dam levels down to 20%

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Com­mu­nity members have to wait to collect water from roaming water tankers. (PHOTO: GALLO IMAGES)
Com­mu­nity members have to wait to collect water from roaming water tankers. (PHOTO: GALLO IMAGES)

Just two years ago Capetonians in the grip of a devastating drought narrowly avoided Day Zero – the day the taps were due to run dry. Steady winter rains have filled dams in the Western Cape to the brim – but 900km away, dry taps are exactly what residents are having to contend with. 

The Nelson Mandela Bay municipality in the Eastern Cape recently declared Day Zero, leaving thousands without access to the precious resource. 

For the past few years, the province has been plagued by drought and though residents have been living with strict water restrictions, they say taps were turned off last month without warning. 

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