Measures in place to ease impact of CT’s water crisis on schools

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and the provincial Education Department on Wednesday presented their plans for 16 April.

Cape Town residents collect 25 litres of water at the Newlands springs in Cape Town. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Measures are in place to mitigate the impact that Cape Town’s water crisis will have on schools.

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and the provincial Education Department on Wednesday presented their plans for 16 April.

“Currently there’s a 60% chance that Day Zero will happen and we can’t ignore it. However, we can bring those chances down.”

The city faces running out of water entirely by 16 April, but the department believes that Day Zero can and will be avoided.

The department says that it has surveyed the needs of schools extensively over the past six months.

Mayor Patricia de Lille has revealed most Capetonians still exceed the daily limit of 87 litres of water per person per day and soon that could cost them and that council will vote to introduce Level 6B water restrictions which will reduce the target to 50 litres per day.  This is what 50 litres per day means.


Level 6B restrictions come into effect on 1 February, along with punitive tariffs for water guzzlers.

Even before the heightened curbs came into effect today, Capetonians had been urged to cut their consumption from 75 litres per person a day to 50 litres.

The new daily collective consumption target is now 450 million litres a day.

Increased water blitzes are also expected.

The tougher restrictions will be in place for the next four months.

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In an effort to avoid Day Zero, the City of Cape Town is intensifying pressure management on the water supply system.

Work is scheduled to take place in various areas including Green Point, Sea Point, the V&A Waterfront and areas around Beach Road on Thursday.

Mayoral committee member Xanthea Limberg says that they’ve identified 25 areas where work is required over the next three months.

Meanwhile, the Water and Sanitation Department has warned Gauteng residents against sending bottled water to drought-stricken Cape Town as they risk putting a strain on their own supplies.

Schools, companies and communities have been donating water bottles and tanks that will be sent to the Mother City while Capetonians wait for their first winter rains.

The Water and Sanitation Department’s Sputnik Ratau says Gauteng residents must be careful not to create their own water crisis.

Additional reporting by Kaylynn Palm and Mia Lindeque.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)