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Municipality Lifts Water Restrictions for Oudtshoorn

Oudtshoorn, 14 December 2021 – The overflowing of the Raubenheimer Dam which supplies drinking water to Oudtshoorn following recent heavy rain has brought relief to the consumers in Oudtshoorn as water restrictions have been lifted.

With the drought, strict water restrictions have been imposed for the past number of years. Following the recent rains, the level of the Raubenheimer Dam has risen dramatically and the dam is currently overflowing.

“We have immediately removed the water restrictions for the area that receives water from the Raubenheimer Dam, which is Oudtshoorn, excluding De Rust, Dysselsdorp and the surrounding rural areas,” said Chris Swart, the Municipal senior manager for water and sewer.

“The lifting is subject to the high level of the dam, and should the dam level drop significantly, the strict restrictions will be reinstated,” Swart added.

Water restrictions remain in place for Dysselsdorp, De Rust and Rural areas

On the other side, strict water restrictions remain in place for the rural areas, De Rust and Dysselsdorp. “These areas get their water from the Klein Karoo Landelike Waterskema (KKLWS) boreholes. These boreholes and the KKLWS are still under pressure and cannot meet the demand. This also applies to the rest of De Rust which gets water from the Huis River.

Although the river is currently flowing strongly, the Municipality is only entitled to a limited withdrawal from the river. This permitted withdrawal is not sufficient to meet De Rust’s need and is supplemented by the source from the KKLWS.

Level 4B water restrictions applicable to Dysselsdorp, De Rust and surrounding rural areas can be viewed on this link:

Normal water tariffs in implementation since September 2021

The Municipal Finance department also confirmed that the drought water tariffs had already been changed to normal tariffs. The chief financial officer, Mr Gerald de Jager said that the finance department has been inundated with many enquiries since the dam reached 100% capacity, people asking whether the tariffs have been lowered.

“The normal tariffs were implemented on the consumers’ statements/bill with effect from 17 September 2021 already, and no higher tariffs were billed since,” de Jager said.  “The drought tariff on the statement/bill will only be higher if the dam levels drop to 50% and below,” he added.

The director for technical services, Mr. Justin Lesch made an appeal to consumers to continue using water sparingly despite the Raubenheimer Dam overflow. “Notwithstanding the Raubenheimer dam level that is currently at 100%, consumers still need to consume water sparingly and the summer months are still approaching with our peak demands in February / March 2022.

“We still experience water leaks in some areas in the Greater Oudtshoorn Municipality and are attending to those problems to ensure that this dwindling resource is protected. The Oudtshoorn Municipality urge all residents to report water leaks at the Oudtshoorn Municipality’s local offices to ensure that the necessary repairs are implemented,” Lesch added.