Alerts and Water Restrictions Answers to your questions about water restrictions and water sprinkling in Campbell River:
Why are water restrictions needed in Campbell River? Isn’t there an endless supply of water in the lakes?
While the Campbell River watershed is quite large, there is a limit to the amount of water that the City can disinfect and deliver - Within the 1,065 litres/second (l/s) system capacity, 300 l/s is allocated for fire protection, leaving 765 l/s available is for domestic use. Any time we have sustained use over the 765 l/s threshold, we are compromising the water available for fire protection. Water restrictions may also be needed in emergency situations such as an interface fire, significant failure of the water system, or extreme drought.
How does a drought affect lake levels and the amount of water available to the City?
The lakes in the Campbell River watershed are capable of storing water for the drier summer months. The levels of these reservoirs are controlled by BC Hydro as per their water license and the Campbell River System Water Use Plan. Due to the size of the watershed, the amount of water withdrawn for the City’s water system has a negligible impact on lake levels as long as the water consumption is kept within reasonable limits.
How does the City determine when to implement higher stages of restrictions?
During the summer season, the City closely monitors water use. The decision to implement higher stages of restrictions considers the water use patterns and weather forecasts. Increased restrictions are generally triggered by sustained water consumption over the domestic water allowance combined with forecasts of increasing temperatures. Higher restrictions can also be triggered by specific situations such as an interface fire, significant failure of the water system, or extreme drought (i.e. if there was a risk of running out of water in the watershed).
Is there anything that the community can do to avoid or delay an increase to water restrictions?
Yes, the community’s willingness to limit water consumption and follow the watering restriction times is the key to delaying and/or avoiding increased water restrictions. Increased water consumption and/or failure to follow restriction times increases the likelihood of further restrictions being imposed upon the community.
Why are there different stages of watering restrictions and how do they make a difference in water use?
Stage 1 and 2 watering restrictions have been designed to help the City manage the peak usage periods to ensure adequate water is available for fire protection by controlling when water is used for various activities. Stage 3 watering restrictions are intended to significantly limit water consumption in case of an interface fire, emergency maintenance on the water system or extreme drought.
Where does it apply?
The bylaw applies to all residents within the City of Campbell River boundaries. Properties outside city boundaries are governed by the Strathcona Regional District. This includes properties south of Jubilee Parkway.
What if I have new lawn?
New Watering Permits are only available during Stage 1 restrictions. Residents who obtained Watering Permits to water a new lawn during Stage 1 restrictions may continue to water with the existing permit into Stage 2 restrictions, until their 21 day period for sod or 45 day period for seed is complete. There is no watering allowed in Stage 3 restrictions, even with an existing Watering Permit.
What are the watering restrictions in strata housing?
Strata operated common area irrigation systems are considered non-residential, with the strata address controlling their allowable watering days. If residents wish to water these centrally irrigated areas additionally, they must also water during non-residential hours according to the main strata address. Areas within strata's without a common area irrigation system are considered residential, with the unit address controlling their allowable watering days. This is to spread out the watering demand for the area as much as possible. Basing individual unit watering times on their unit number helps to spread out the instantaneous water use for the property.
Can I water my hanging baskets, vegetables, shrubs and lawn during the day?
Yes, if you use a hand-held container or hose with automatic shut-off nozzle. You can also water these during the day, if you have a micro-irrigation or drip-irrigation system, but not a soaker hose.
What is the difference between a micro-irrigation system and a soaker hose?
A micro- or drip-irrigation system uses components that deliver less than 20 litres per hour and operate at less than 25 pounds per square inch to deliver water to the root zone of the plant material being irrigated. This includes spray emitter systems, point source emitters and linear tape systems as defined by the BC Trickle Irrigation manual. This does not include soaker or weeper hoses, as these operate at the standard water pressure and can deliver 20 litres per minute.
Can I pressure wash my driveway, house?
During Stage 1 restrictions – Yes, but please use just enough water for the job. During Stage 2 and Stage 3 restrictions – not allowed.
Can I wash my car, house, or boat during the day?
During Stage 1 restrictions - Yes, if you use a hose nozzle with an automatic shut-off valve. Better yet, use a bucket and a rag. During Stage 2 and Stage 3 restrictions - not allowed except at commercial car washes or car dealerships.
I just saw a property sprinkling on the wrong day/wrong time, what should I day?
Call the City of Campbell River water hotline: 250-203-2316 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org Provide the address, date and time that you observed the sprinkling violation. Also provide your own phone number and name. We will not disclose sources of information, but we do not follow up on "anonymous" calls.
What if my question was not listed here?
Call or e-mail the water hotline. Phone: 250-203-2316. Email: email@example.com
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