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Reservoirs Recovering 11 November 2003

The Chief Executive, Patrick Heaton-Armstrong commented:

"With the rainfall over the weekend the supply situation has begun to change at long last. Our supply arrangements are now looking more secure and, provided customers do not waste water, should remain that way. But with only a showery week ahead and three very depleted reservoirs, a cautious approach to allowing customers to use their hosepipes once again is being adopted. We will review the situation regarding the use of hosepipes at the end of the week - it depends on the amount of rainfall and runoff into the reservoirs in the days ahead to see whether the situation is sustained.

The down side of the rainfall is that it has brought some very discoloured and turbid water into the reservoirs. This is proving difficult to treat and customers may as a result be experiencing discoloured water for which we apologise."

Over the weekend there was 22.4 mm of rain at West Baldwin and now that the catchment area has become wet this is resulting in run off into the reservoirs. Recent rainfall has helped all reservoirs whose contents are now as follows:

  • West Baldwin, 61% full, 48 days supply, the water level has come up by 1.96metres in a week
  • Ballure, 85% full, 57 days supply, the water level has come up by 760 mm in a week
  • Clypse, 15% full, not taking water but an increase of 860 mm in water level
  • Kerrowdhoo, 18% full, a rise of 180 mm in water level in a week due input from Clypse Reservoir, started taking water again but at a very slow rate
  • Cringle, 23% full, not taking water, the water level has come up by 300mm in a week
  • Sulby, 77% full, the water level has risen by 1.29 metres during last week

Ballagawne Water Treatment Works has been out of commission in recent weeks due to lack of water but small amounts are now being processed and put into supply.

The supply for the south of the Island is still being derived, in equal proportions, from Sulby Water Treatment Works (via the West Coast Trunk Main and St Johns Pumping Station) and Glencrutchery Water Treatment Works via the Braaid Service Reservoir.

Since the beginning of September the water level of West Baldwin has been maintained by constant pumping over the hill at Beinn-y-Phott from Sulby Reservoir but with the increase in water level in West Baldwin Reservoir it has been decided to switch off one pump, saving 400 per day in power costs.

Water consumption is stable at 24 million litres per day. The Chief Executive says:

"Thanks to all those customers who have contributed to the savings - the savings were achieved at a crucial time and helped to stabilise the unusual situation".

The hosepipe ban which came into force on 9th October has been extended to the end of November but the need for this will be reviewed at the end of the week.

The systematic programme of flushing water from hydrants around the Island to remove discolouration deposits ceased 2 months ago in order to conserve stocks of water. There will have been a gradual build up of deposits in the mains as a result and many customers will be experiencing discoloured water for which the Authority apologises. The regular flushing programme will recommence just as soon as it is decided stocks of water have reached safe levels.

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