Joburg residents urged to use water sparingly

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Johannesburg residents are urged to use water sparingly while Joburg Water attends to the water shortage affecting parts of Gauteng.

The bulk supplier’s Managing Director Ntshavheni Mukwevho has attributed the water shortages to six power outages at some of its reservoirs, among other challenges.

Johannesburg Mayor Sello Dada Morero, meanwhile said the region’s aging water treatment infrastructure needs extensive renovations.

He was speaking during a media briefing with City Power and Joburg Water at its headquarters in Johannesburg.

Joburg Water requires a cash injection of R100 billion to upgrade its water infrastructure.

The Mayor believes the investment will prevent the current water shortages from becoming a regular occurrence.

“This is not really about water shortage. It’s really about the inability to pump water due to technical challenges including power outages. But there is sufficient water,” says Morero.

This follows interruptions at a bulk supplier in Vereeniging which were caused by a series of power outages. The temporary disturbance is said to have negatively impacted pumps at some reservoirs.

“We actually require 2500 kilolitres per hour for our pumps to operate at optimal levels. The power interruption meant that the reservoir for our bulk supplier went low which affected our reservoirs as well,” says Mukwevho.

City Power says the reservoirs to which it supplies electricity to are exempt from rolling blackouts. It attributed the power outages to vandalism, theft, and aging infrastructure.

“We are able to isolate during load shedding and we ensure that their power is kept on. The period the MD is talking about, only one of the 6 power outages came from City Power side,” says City of Power’s CEO Tshifularo Mashava.

Residents continue to grapple with water shortages. A car wash in Ekurhuleni is losing business during periods of water shortages.

The four workers are forced to stay at home for days without water.

“If there is no water it means we won’t be able to pay our employees. They have to work and if they don’t work we won’t be able to pay them,” says Siya’s Lounge Manager Nhlakanipho Shabangu.

Meanwhile, residents are urged to exercise patience while the system is under pressure. This is at a time when demand is high due to a heatwave and little rainfall.

Rand Water has also implemented water cuts affecting some Gauteng areas: