‘Drought alert’ for city water customers
KINGSTON >> A “drought alert” was issued Friday for customers of the city water system due to the falling water level in Kingston’s main reservoir.
The action by the Kingston Board of Water Commissioners calls on customers to voluntarily conserve water.
Cooper Lake in the town of Woodstock, the principal storage reservoir for Kingston, was at 75 percent capacity on Friday, according to a press release from the city. The average for this time of year is 85 percent, the city said.
“While we began September at normal levels, a significant lack of rainfall during the month caused the reservoir to drop three feet during that month,” the press release stated.
At the current level, there is sufficient water in the reservoir to supply all customers for the next 170 days, even without significant rainfall, the release said. The conservation request is intended to make the supply last longer.
To conserve water, the city suggests people take shorter showers, run dishwashers and washing machines only when full, repair leaky faucets and toilets, and turn off faucets while shaving, soaping hands and brushing teeth.
Water conservation during a “drought alert” is strictly voluntary, but every bit helps, the city said.
Kingston issued a more serious “drought warning” in August 2012, when the water level in Cooper Lake fell to 65 percent of capacity. That warning later was escalated to a “drought emergency” that was lifted in October of that year, when the reservoir reached 70 percent capacity.
Before 2012, the last time the city declared a “drought emergency” was 1980.
Cooper Lake in Woodstock, the main reservoir for the city of Kingston, is shown on Thursday.