Local News

N.C. Residents Asked To Observe Water Conservation Measures

Posted June 13, 2002 2:26 a.m. EDT

— Due to the high temperatures and lack of rain, officials in several areas across the state are asking residents to cut back on their water usage.

Both Durham and


officials are asking residents to observe voluntary restrictions, which include watering lawns between midnight and 5 a.m., limiting car washes and checking hoses for leaks.

The request is the first time voluntary conservation measures have been implemented in Raleigh since June 1999.

Officials say Raleigh's reservoir -- Falls Lake -- has dropped two feet below its normal level. It is now at 87 percent capacity. The city's utility director said more conservation will be sought when the lake gets to 60 percent capacity.

An increasing number of private water wells are also becoming casualties of the weather. In the first three days of this week, Wake County's well permitting program has received as many applications as the County generally gets in an entire month, according to Greg Bright, who manages the program.

"Wake County Environmental Services is receiving more reports of wells going dry and permit requests for costly replacement wells or additional wells," Bright said, noting that most months, the County receives an average of 15 applications for permits.

Since June 1, the County has received 20 applications, and 14 of those have been received since June 10.

Orange County Commission chairman Barry Jacobs has also declared a Stage 2 water shortage alert for Hillsborough and customers of the Orange-Alamance water systems.

And Fort Bragg officials are asking residents to implement water conservation measures due to extremely low surface water levels.