The city of Cape Town says residents’ high usage of water over the last week has brought Day Zero closer by three weeks.
Water and Sanitation Director Peter Flower said the city’s overall water usage had risen to 641 million litres per day, pushing Day Zero to 29 April 2018.
The total storage has fallen by 1.1% and as of this week, dam levels stand at 33%.
“If water consumption continues to rise, together with the very hot, windy conditions, which increase evaporation losses, we can expect Day Zero to happen as soon as 18 March 2018. This is a terrifying prospect, residential customers remain the largest portion of water users. If we can bring consumption down to 500 million litres per day, we will be able to avoid Day Zero,” Flower said.
Day Zero is the day that almost all of the taps in the city will be turned off and people will have to queue for water at approximately 200 sites across the peninsula.
Although some essential services will stay connected, almost all residential suburbs will be cut off.
Flower said the city’s teams would be working throughout the festive season to ensure that the average response time to leaks or burst pipes is under two hours and that they maintain the advanced pressure management system that is limiting demand.
“Level 6 water restrictions will come into effect from 1 January and all households who use more than 10.5 kilolitres per month will have a water management device fitted.”