27 Oct Area moves into Stage-3 drought, water conservation measures now mandatory
While some light rain passed through the area over the weekend, the Birmingham Water Works Board has moved into the next category of drought management.
BWWB issued a Stage-3 Drought Warning on Wednesday, making water conservation measures mandatory rather than just a suggestion and reminder.
“Voluntary measures were not enough to deal with this level of drought,” Darryl Jones, BWWB assistant general manager of operations and technical services, said in a Wednesday press release.
Jones cited severe lack of rain, along with low levels at Lake Purdy, a major BWWB source. He also said water consumption has not gone down through voluntary measures.
The Stage-3 warning calls for surcharges for customers using too much water or violating watering restrictions. While the agency reported a reduction of water usage over the weekend, a significant uptick in use on Monday and Tuesday led to the move further into the management plan.
Rain is in the forecast for Thursday and Friday due to a cold front moving through the region, but the Birmingham National Weather Service office described it as nothing but a “dust settler.”
BWWB customers using above 110 percent of their monthly average will be charged a 200 percent surcharge, and would go into affect on Nov. 19, 30 days after the Stage-3 notice.
The agency also requested that local municipalities invoke their drought ordinances.
The Hoover City Clerk’s office said the city attorney was drafting a public notice, and that the city would release it Thursday.
The BWWB Drought Management Plan and its suggestions for water conservation can be found online at bwwb.org/droughttips.
See Birmingham Waterworks Board Drought Summary Plan. bwwb-drought-summary