Busy time for water carriers
Water is the big issue facing many Northlanders.
The declaration of an official drought on February 3 by the Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy came as no surprise to anyone living in Northland with water supplies, particularly for those on tank water, already compromised by the dry conditions.
Water carriers throughout the region report being busier than a normal summer, particularly in Mangawhai where a severe water shortage has been partially alleviated by water being trucked by Fonterra tankers from The Whangarei District Council water facility at Ruakaka to a bulk depot at Mangawhai.
Heather Juretich from Dargaville Carriers and Water 2 Go in Whangarei confirms they and other carriers have all been busy with deliveries in their respective districts.
WDC’s water service manager Andrew Venmore says December and January have been the driest since the council started keeping statistics on rainfall in 1971.
He doesn’t expect any kind of water restrictions will be needed for at least four to six weeks but notes, ‘‘if we don’t get substantial rain in the next week we may look at asking people to take care not to waste water.’’
However residents at around 35 properties at Mangapai have been asked to make a real effort to conserve water because the Mangapai Stream is vey low.
The Far North District Council has raised their water restrictions in the Opononi -Omapere area to include a full ban on the use of hoses, and the filling of private swimming pools from the council’s water supplies.
Residents can still water gardens and clean outdoors using a bucket.
A district wide ban introduced on January 16 remains on sprinklers, unattended garden hoses and automatic irrigation devices for all properties connected to its town water supplies in other areas.
Town supplies affected are Kaitaia, Kerikeri-Waipapa, WaitangiPaihia-Opua, KawakawaMoerewa, Kaikohe-Ngawha, Rawene-Omanaia and Okaihau. The council welcomed the announcement as it underlines the serious situation facing the Far North and reinforces the need for Far North residents to conserve water.