“Every drop counts, and everyone can make a difference,” said George Municipal Manager Trevor Botha regarding municipal efforts to secure the city’s water resources and spreading the word. The level of the Garden Route Dam, which services the greater George area, has dropped to below 60% on June 1, which led to the immediate implementation of water restrictions to manage the city’s water security. The limitations are in terms of the municipality’s Drought Management Policy and are applicable to the entire George municipal area, including Uniondale and Haarlem. The latest dam level reading, which is taken weekly on Wednesdays, was 56.22% on June 14.
Mr Botha said the municipality had posted the restrictions’ implications for water users on the municipality’s website, on social media platforms, and advertised in local and regional print media and on radio stations to spread the word. “We will also be distributing 60 000 flyers to residents and businesses to alert locals and visitors to the restrictions, and have an ongoing communications and awareness programme to maintain the message.” The municipality has also appealed to its employees to save water at home and at work. “We have had rainwater tanks, for the washing of our vehicle fleet, in place for some time and enforce limited washing hours to further save resources.
“While the municipality is proud of the sparkling clean GO GEORGE buses and appreciates George Link Pty Ltd for keeping them that way, we have requested the vehicle operating company to cut on the washing schedule to support the water restrictions campaign. If the public notices that the buses aren’t as shiny as usual, we ask for their understanding.”
Mr Botha appealed to all residents, businesses and visitors to not only save water, but to also spread the word of the restrictions and their implications. “We appeal to every person to help us preserve our water security. You can make a tangible difference by sticking to the restrictions and making sure everybody you come in contact with knows that we have restrictions in place. Please report water leaks to our Civil Engineering Department, at 044 801 9262 or after hours at 044 801 6300, as soon as you notice them.
“The municipality is being proactive in protecting this essential resource, and we ask our citizens to do the same. We all need water and we will all be equally affected if it is no longer available – let’s work together to save as much water as we can, every day, on every occasion,” said Mr Botha.
The water restrictions mean the following measures are immediately in place: