PORT ALFRED WATER SITUATION
01 APRIL 2019
The lack of rain in our catchment area has resulted in very low levels at our weir at pump station NO. 1 below the Sarel Hayward dam. In order for this weir to be replenished, all the dams and weirs in the upstream catchment area needs to first be filled.
Port Alfred raw water supply is currently being abstracted from Sarel Hayward dam as the water from Kowie river weir is very low. Under normal circumstances, Port Alfred raw water is usually pumped from the Kowie river weir to Sarel Hayward dam, the dam levels have dropped drastically to below 60 % for the reasons above and we are now currently drawing our raw water from the dam, as the dam is a holding facility there is a build-up of algae and silt which contributes to the colour and odour.
Normally, the raw water pumped from Sarel Hayward dam/Kowie river weir would be stored at Balancing dam where aeration and natural oxidation would take place. We are currently by-passing the Balancing dam and raw water is being pumped directly to the water treatment works in Port Alfred without undergoing the normal aeration route. Due to drought and increased consumption in Port Alfred, we are currently unable to feed excess water into the balancing dam.
Due to the deteriorating situation at the Sarel Hayward dam we are busy making alternative arrangements to assist with our current situation. An official media briefing is planned for Thursday, 4th April 2019 where all the plans and technical details will be unpacked.
Although the latest test results indicated that the water is safe for consumption, the municipality has recently observed a change in visual appearance of water, which has led us to the immediate resampling.
Municipality would like to urge the community to boil the water before use or make use of rain water tanks whilst waiting for the resampling results. This will be communicated at the Thursday 4th April 2019 media briefing.
We apologize for the inconvenience due to the unfortunate crisis, however our technical team is working hard to resolve this matter.
NOTICE NUMBER: 75/2019 ROLLY DUMEZWENI
1 April 2019 MUNICIPAL MANAGER