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Beaufort West relies on boreholes & recycled sewage water for supply

The Gamka Dam, which is the Central Karoo town's main water source, is empty.

The N1 highway between Cape Town and Beaufort West. Picture: EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Beaufort West Municipality says more than 80% of its current water supply comes from boreholes.

The Gamka Dam, which is the Central Karoo town's main water source, is empty.

The town is now relying on boreholes and recycled sewage water for supply.

Beaufort West Mayor Japie van der Linde says action is being taken.

“We are starting to put up tanks so that we can cut off certain areas from the system, so that people can get their water tanks. At this stage our boreholes are still fine, but we’re monitoring them every day.”

It's a sobering reminder for Cape Town where daily water consumption has increased.

Last week, dam storage levels declined by 0,7% to 37,8% (27,8% usable water) in Cape Town. Collective usage was at 602 million litres per day. This is 102 million litres above what is required for the city to get through the drought.

The municipality says if it runs out of borehole water, plan B is to provide water tankers in local communities.

Municipal Manager Kosie Haarhoff said: “We are in a dire situation; we have a severe drought. The dam’s empty. We are relying on 32 boreholes that are currently providing water to the town and the reclamation plant. We are praying for rain and we hope to get some rain within the next couple of days.”

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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