The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality says water levels at dams that supply the metro have reached critical proportions.
With combined dam levels are sitting at just above 18%, the city is about to experience the full impact of the drought.
The municipality says although they fixed 80% of leakages, about 30% of water continues to be wasted.
Water provision to some residents and businesses has been intermittent for about a week.
Aging infrastructure has presented the Metro with more challenges.
A pipe burst at the Nooitgedacht Water Scheme and electricity faults were the leading cause of intermittent water cuts for the past couple of days.
Residents say life is getting tougher every day.
“It’s really terrible, we can’t do any bathing or shower and on top of that we have loadshedding so it’s very awkward for us,” says one resident.
In the video below, the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro faces ongoing water crisis:
Business owners suffering
With businesses still reeling from the nationwide lockdown, some business owners in the metro are barely coping.
Businessman Michael Kliment says his company is suffering.
They manufacture high precision tooling and pressing that supplies the automotive industry.
The industry relies heavily on water usage.
He says with no water available, he had to send some of his staff home.
“There are targets that I have to make. I supply the automotive industry. For instance, they don’t care that I have a water leak, they want their parts on a Tuesday…A lot of our machines also use water for cooling, but we have got a system where we re-use the water but it needs to be cleansed once every two weeks and this is the week. So, my spot wilders can’t run, my dressing mount injection can’t run because they need to be cooled down. I can’t use old water and as you can see its just leaking, leaking no stop and no one is working on it,” says Kliment.
Government says its implementing lasting solutions
MMC for Infrastructure and Engineering Mongameli Bobani says there are plans to provide longer-lasting solutions such as desalination plants and borehole water; adding that plumbers are on the ground repairing water leaks.
Bobani has appealed to residents to use water sparingly and pray for rain.
He says there are plans to employ plumbers for each ward to ensure a quick response to water leaks.