DWS: We're not out of the woods just yet

The Department of Water and Sanitation says that while the recent rains have brought relief, above normal rainfall is needed for the situation to improve.

FILE: Sluice gates at the Vaal Dam are opened. Picture: Sha Redfern/iWitness

JOHANNESBURG - The Water and Sanitation Department has now confirmed that national water levels have reached 50.7%.

The department is conducting a site visit at the Vaal Dam this afternoon where it has given an update on the levels following heavy rainfall over the past few weeks.

Municipalities in Gauteng have been instructed to save 15% of water, a call that’s forced two metros to implement level three water restrictions.

The department's Trevor Balzer says the cities of Johannesburg, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni have met their target of reducing water usage by 15%.

“As of Monday, at a national level we are sitting at 50.7% which is an indication that week-on-week, from last week to this week despite all of the rain we have had we have only risen by 1.9%.”

But Balzer says this does not mean we are out of the woods and while the recent heavy rains have brought relief, we need above normal rainfall for the situation to improve, in order for a lift of the restrictions to be considered.

“We would only reconsider when I think the system is at around 70%.”

(Edited by Neo Koza)