15 Apr 2010

Water restrictions in Whangarei

1:43 pm on 15 April 2010

Water restrictions will be imposed in Whangarei at 5pm on Thursday.

The city is the latest to adopt the measure as drought continues to ravage the north.

Whangarei District Council says the situation is not as dire as in some places, but the Whau Valley dam is at 50%, for the first time in 16 years.

However, it says, there is no risk the dam will run out of water.

Washing of cars, watering the garden, water-blasting and topping up swimming pools will all be restricted.

Restrictions still in place in Nelson

Rain in Nelson over the last 24 hours has not been enough to lift first stage water restrictions.

Tasman District Council says a 20% cut in water takes will remain for some permit holders on the Waimea Plains.

Alternate-day hosing restrictions still apply in urban areas, including Richmond.

The council says some groundwater levels in Motueka and Golden Bay are at their lowest in several years.

Auckland warning

The company that supplies water to Auckland has issued its starkest warning of water shortages in almost 15 years.

Watercare says Auckland uses 16 million litres more water than usual every day, and low rainfall has also contributed to storage lakes being 61% full, compared to the usual 65% - 70%.

The utility says forecasts are for low to average rainfall in the next three months and there could be shortages next summer.