Local News

Rocky Mount Imposes Mandatory Water Restrictions

Posted August 8, 2007 6:00 p.m. EDT
Updated August 8, 2007 10:48 p.m. EDT

— 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.