30 January 2020
WATER SUPPLY UPDATE
Even though Makana Municipality planned to increase water supply to Makhanda, the current unexpected prolonged drought means that we find ourselves in worse situation than last year. Restricted water supply will unfortunately have to continue until there is sufficient rainfall to increase the levels of Howiesonspoort and Settlers Dams enough that water can be pumped from them.
Our high lying areas, such as Hill 60, Cradock Heights, Army Base, and the Prison, are the ones most affected by water supply challenges. To try to mitigate this, a pump station was erected at the intermediate reservoir to pump water to the high-level reservoir that feeds the high lying areas. However, because no water is available from the Waainek Water Works (Western side), keeping the reservoirs full enough to ensure that all residents have water at all times is becoming increasingly difficult. It should also be noted that the boreholes drilled at the Waainek Water Works by the Gift of the Givers are delivering less than 0,5ML water per day and the yield is continuously decreasing.
Residents are reminded that although upgrades to the James Kleynhans Water Works (Eastern side) commenced in 2018, it is estimated that they will only be completed in 2021. As for now, the James Kleynhans Water Works is producing only 13ML/day, while the total consumption of water for Makhanda is 18ML/day. Besides running at a deficit of 5ML per day, any interruption to the James Kleynhans Water Works, such as load shedding or pump failure, has a tremendous impact on keeping the system balanced (ie keeping reservoir levels at an acceptable level).
The Municipality is trying its best to provide water to residents, despite these challenges. In order to ensure that all areas receive water equally, the Municipality has no choice but to restrict water availability in the evenings at 20:00 to Monday mornings 10:00. This will allow time for the water to reach the high-level reservoirs. The University, schools, businesses, hospitals, government institutions and residents should please take note of these restrictions, which will be implemented from the 7th of February. It is essential that all institutions and residents make provision and plan for being without water over weekends from now until the drought ends. Using water sparingly will obviously go a long way to alleviate the severity of the situation we find ourselves in, so please continue to restrict water usage as much as possible. It has come under our attention that taps are opened during times when there are no water and left open. We want to appeal to residents to please close all taps when there is no water.
As a way forward, the Municipality is in the process of requesting ESKOM to exclude the James Kleynhans Water Works from future load-shedding. Furthermore, several Jojo tanks have been acquired and installed; their locations will be communicated soon, so that residents know where to collect water during weekends.
Issued by the Makana Communications Office.