Area D residents commended for saving water

Residents in Area D, south of the city, are being commended for conserving water in the midst of drought-like conditions

Residents in Area D, south of the city, are being commended for conserving water in the midst of drought-like conditions.

The dry, hot summer prompted the Strathcona Regional District to implement stage two watering restrictions for homes located south of Jubilee Parkway to York Road.

And it appears residents played by the rules.

“Residents will be happy to know that their efforts paid off,” reads the latest issue of the Strathcona Regional District’s Regional Rapport newsletter. “According to the SRD’s (Strathcona Regional District’s) records, water consumption in July dropped by almost 20,000 cubic metres from the previous month, and was almost 15,000 cubic metres less than the historic average.”

Area D residents have been under stage two watering restrictions since early June, in response to a long, hot summer with record-breaking temperatures, wildfires, drought, and even the prohibition of fishing in most Vancouver Island rivers.

The City of Campbell River, however, was spared this summer from severe watering restrictions and remained at stage one throughout the summer.

With a watershed of more than 1,800 square kilometres in size, the city said it did not face the same concerns about running out of water that other communities were facing.

The city also only came close to its upper limit of 765 litres per second a few times, with peak water use averaging 400 to 500 litres per second, well below the capacity limit.

In Area D, however, watering restrictions were necessary to maintain sufficient volumes of water for household and firefighting needs during peak water demand when the amount of water produced was not enough to keep up with the demand.

Under stage two restrictions in Area D, residents are only allowed to water their lawns, trees, flowers and vegetable gardens using a sprinkler before 7 a.m. and after 7 p.m. on Tuesdays and Saturdays for even-numbered houses and on Wednesdays and Sundays for odd-numbered houses.

Watering is permitted at any time if using a hand-held container or a hand-held hose with an automatic shut-off nozzle.

Newly planted shrubs, flowers, vegetables and trees can be watered by any method during installation and for a 24 hour period following planting.

Prohibited activities include washing sidewalks, driveways and parking lot surfaces, unless for application of paint or stucco, preparing for paving or bricking, or to comply with health and safety regulations.

The northern Area D water area comprises homes from Jubilee Parkway to York Road and the Strathcona Regional District is responsible for providing water to 1,135 services within that area. The majority of those services are for residential properties.

The distribution network consists of 29.3 kilometres of water main and there are roughly 110 fire hydrants, 340 valves and pressure reducing valves at McGimpsey and Storrie Creek.