Island residents urged to save water, despite rain

Friday December 14, 2018 Written by Published in Environment

Rarotonga is now on a Level 3 water warning for drought, says Infrastructure Cook Islands.

 

The announcement comes despite heavy rain falling over the weekend.

ICI says: “The updated forecast says we are now getting more rain this week. This is great news.

“The water pressure has increased but don't relax everyone, because the effects from the weekend will be temporary. Please apply water conservation at all times.”

The ministry is asking everyone on Rarotonga to not waste water, including members of the public, growers and accommodation providers.

“ICI acknowledges that rain has fallen during the weekend and more is expected this week however, normal to below normal rainfall is forecast for December therefore we should still practice water conservation to reduce risk.

“Many homes in elevated areas are without water supply from the network so please adhere to the controls and tips.”

The triggers for Level 3 can include continuous below average rainfall extending from the previous month, stream flow below 50 per cent capacity, reticulation pressure readings below 50 per cent capacity and residential/community water storage below 50 per cent of capacity. Other triggers include tourist water supply storage below 50 per cent of capacity and low rainfall forecast for the next month. ICI also asks that Rarotongans comply with the following measures until further notice:

• Repair leaking plumbing.

• Only water gardens and playing surfaces on alternating days between 6am-10am and 6pm-10pm.

• Do not use water for aesthetic purposes such as filling or topping up fountains ponds.

• Do not fill new or existing pools and spas.

• Refrain from using water to clean a vehicle except in the case of vehicles for mass transportation.

• Do not use water to clean hard surfaces such as buildings (including windows), except for cleaning required as a result of an accident, fire, health hazard, or other emergency.

• Do not use water to suppress dust unless the dust is causing or is likely to cause health or environmental hazard.

• Only water agricultural plantations between 6am-10am and 6pm-10pm.

•  Do not leave water continuously running for livestock animals. Use buckets and troughs.

• No fires in yards.

                -Release

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