JIS News

The National Water Commission (NWC) has placed restriction on water being distributed through the Hermitage supply system, which is presently only at 50 per cent of its storage capacity.
Customers served by the reservoir include those on Half-Way Tree Road, Constant Spring Road, Red Hills Road, Manor Park, Stony Hill and Smokey Vale areas.
Corporate Communication Manager at the NWC, Charles Buchanan, told JIS News that the water restriction, which started on the weekend, was to allow the Commission to monitor the outflow of water during the current dry period.
“We will have to implement some restriction on the Hermitage/Constant Spring Water Supply System during the course of this week going into the next few weeks should the conditions (drought) continue,” he informed.
“At the moment, the storage level at the Hermitage reservoir is 50 per cent of its 393 million gallons capacity and as we have it now, where the rainfall is non-existent and the inflows into Hermitage have virtually dried up, if we do not manage the amount of water used, we will shortly run of water,” he pointed out.
Mr. Buchanan said that the water restriction measures will initially be implemented during off peak hours that is from 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m., when the demand for water is at its minimum.
“We have to ensure that we have water available to our customers during the peak periods from 6:00 a.m. to 8: 00 a.m. (and) .in the late afternoon when persons return home,” he stated.
He said that “in extreme conditions, where the water has declined to very low levels, the NWC will also take steps to have gazetted and instituted, some legal restrictions that will prevent people from using the treated water for certain it would normally list out the things which you can use the water we provide to do and not do, and there are financial penalties attached.”
As it relates to the Mona Reservoir, Mr. Buchanan said that customers served by this water supply system will face no restrictions, as the system is currently at 80 per cent of its storage capacity.
As it relates to conservation, Mr. Buchanan said that customers can assist, by managing their use of water, and so reduce the level of waste that occurs.
“Conserve, by not using water if it is not necessary; we do a lot of water wastage. Studies done around the world show that 30 per cent of water used in the homes is water essentially being wasted,” he noted.
In giving conservation tips, Mr. Buchanan urged customers for instance, to turn off taps when lathering in the shower and when brushing their teeth.
In addition, he said that customers can conserve by installing water-saving devices in their homes such as toilets that use less than seven gallons of water per flush, and shower heads and kitchen pipes, which send out less water. He also urged customers to fix leaks within and around their homes.
“One can actually check if the toilet is leaking. Place colouring in the toilet tank; do not flush. Give a few minutes and see if the colour that you placed in the tank has been transferred to the bowl. If the bowl has the same colour to what was placed in the tank, it means seepage is taking place,” he said.
Mr. Buchanan noted that “a significant amount of savings would be made if persons take those things consideration, and it also saves the customers as there is a direct financial incentive on conserving on their use of water.”

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