Local News

Rocky Mount Imposes Mandatory Water Restrictions

Posted August 8, 2007

— Due to the continuing water shortage in Rocky Mount, the city has called for a state of mandatory water conservation, officials announced Wednesday.

The mandatory restrictions – which apply to residential, commercial and resale water customers – will be effective Saturday. The city has not implemented mandatory water restrictions since June 2002, according to City Manager Stephen Raper.

An official declaration of the water shortage, including voluntary water conservation, has been in effect since July 4. Area rainfall has been measured at 12 inches below average for the preceding seven months, officials said. The Tar River Reservoir is at 50 percent of its capacity.

The city issued the following notice:

Mandatory conservation measures include the restriction of:

  • Watering lawns, plantings, and gardens. The use of automated sprinkler systems is prohibited at all times. Residents may use a hand-held hose or container or a drip irrigation system between the hours of 6 and 9 p.m., according to the following geographic and time limitations:
  • Wednesdays and Saturdays – residents of areas east of U.S. Highway 301-Bypass/Wesleyan Boulevard
  • Thursdays and Sundays – residents of areas west of U.s. Highway 301-Bypass/Wesleyan Boulevard
  • Filling swimming pools or other water-retaining pools. Private and public swimming pools that are operational may stay in use. Pools may not be drained and refilled. The Denton Street Pool and the Senior Center pool will remain open. The spray grounds at Sunset Park and South Rocky Mount Community Center will close at the end of business on Friday.
  • Using water to wash outside areas for any purpose other than public safety. This restriction includes the use of water for dust control or pressure washing.
  • Washing vehicles at any place other than a commercial washing facility.
  • Withdrawing water directly from the Tar River Reservoir for any purpose is prohibited.
  • Serving water in restaurants except upon request by patrons.

These restrictions apply to all water customers of the City of Rocky Mount, including resale customers. The City of Rocky Mount provides water to both Nash and Edgecombe counties, as well as Nashville, Sharpsburg, Whitakers and Dortches.

Certain conditions and exceptions apply in the case of these restrictions. Some types of commercial establishments, such as health-care facilities, plant nurseries, automotive dealerships, and sanitary services, are subject to modified restrictions. Automotive dealerships may wash vehicles at the site of their businesses when the vehicles are first received and at the point of sale or lease.

The Rocky Mount Police Department will enforce these restrictions. Repeat offenders will be subject to fines. Residents can call Rocky Mount Public Utilities Dispatch at 252-972-1278 with questions or to report possible violations.


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  • spazman Aug 10, 2007

    Hey i got an idea!!!Lets wait till its 75% down...DUHH,GOOD OLE ROCKY MOUNT.

  • REDRD Aug 9, 2007

    Rode by the new Imperial Center on Tuesday Morning and noticed that the City was watering the lawn, guess they were trying to get in all the consumption they could before the 'mandatory restrictions' -now that's what I call responsible leadership, thanks for setting the example!

  • shine Aug 9, 2007

    This is a tough situation without a very good ending so far.

  • BLOCKHEAD Aug 8, 2007

    Be careful people, Wells are not as plentiful as you may think, They do not provide an endless water supply, They can run dry, especially with the weather we've been having lately, drought conditions exist, it's very hot, and no substantial rain in sight.

  • gopanthers Aug 8, 2007

    Mandatory is good but N.C. has been having lack of rain issues for what 2 years now and now they impose Mandatory Restrictions in R.M. or any city for that matter. Plan Plan Plan. Its not like this lack of water issue just appeared yesterday. LOL

  • oldschool Aug 8, 2007

    I'm curious - does anybody ever look to see if water consumption actually decreases as a result of "mandatory" water restrictions? I'm on a well, so it doesn't affect me, but I've talked to people who are notorious procrastinators who say they always water their law during restrictions because they know they can't put it off until the next day.

  • Bing Used Aug 8, 2007

    Thank goodness we have our own well.

  • blackdog Aug 8, 2007

    Boys and girls...Falls Lake is low also...