Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
Bulawayo City Council (BCC) yesterday effected a 48-hour water shutdown affecting 24 suburbs mostly in the western areas to stabilise water supply at one of its reservoirs that has fallen to critical levels.
In a statement yesterday, BCC Town Clerk Mr Christopher Dube said water level at Magwegwe Reservoir has been seriously depleted and the 48-hour shutdown ending tomorrow is meant to stabilise supplies at the facility.
The water cut started yesterday at 7:30AM and is expected to end tomorrow at the same time.
He said the affected suburbs are Emganwini, Pumula, Nketa 9, Nkulumane, Nketa, Sizinda, Tshabalala, Bellevue, Newton West, West Somerton, Cowdray Park, Emakhandeni, Gwabalanda, Maplanka, Luveve, Magwegwe, Njube, Entumbane, Mpopoma, Lobengula, Mabutweni, Iminyela, Pelandaba and Matshobane.
“Water supply will thus be cut-off as from Friday, 4 October 2019 to Sunday, 6th October 2019. Thereafter the usual 48-hour water shedding will resume as previously circulated from Monday. Attached is the emergency weekend water shedding program for the areas affected and it is subject to change if the raw water reservoir level improves or further deteriorates,” he said.
Mr Dube said all western areas that are on high ground may endure the shutdown beyond the set 48 hours.
He said the areas would be supplied water using bowsers and urged residents to conserve water.
The shutdown, he said, is caused by an increase in water usage while pumping has dropped to critical levels at the Magwegwe Reservoir.
“The City of Bulawayo is experiencing challenges with Magwegwe Reservoir which supplies most of the Western Suburbs. The challenges are due to the growing water demand across the city and also the areas which Magwegwe Reservoir supplies.
“Efforts are being made to manage the situation as this has of late created intermittent rapid depletion of the Reservoir,” he said.
“Magwegwe Reservoir as of Friday the 4th of October 2019 is at 8.80 feet and below the critical level of 9 feet.
“Inevitably, a need has thus arisen for an emergency shedding to all areas that are fed from off takes along the major supply pipeline from Criterion Waterworks to Magwegwe Reservoir.”
Mr Dube said starting on Monday council will resume the 48 hour water shedding exercise as previously announced. —@nqotshili.