No hard water restrictions despite low river levels
Charlottetown isn't facing water shortages like last summer, says official
The City of Charlottetown hasn't implemented extreme water restrictions this year, despite low water levels in some branches of the Winter River watershed, the main water source for the capital.
Extreme water restrictions are put place when the city exceeds its water extraction limits, set by the province, five days in a row.
Last year, residents were restricted from watering laws and washing cars after drought conditions. Several streams of the Winter River ran dry.
Environment Canada data shows levels have been just as low again this year.
But Ramona Doyle, projects officer with Charlottetown's water and sewer utility, said the city isn't facing the same water shortages this year as it saw last summer.
"In 2012, what really sparked the water-use guidelines was that we were regularly having trouble keeping up with demand," said Doyle.
"So, while we were pumping, had all of our pumps on, we were seeing that our reservoir levels were falling, we weren't able to keep up to customer demand as well as maintaining a certain level for fire flow.
The city isn't having trouble keeping the reservoir full this year, said Doyle.
Charlottetown's seasonal water use restrictions came into effect in early June, and remain in place until Sept. 30.
The restrictions include limiting the watering of lawns to between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m., or 7 p.m. to 1 a.m., to a maximum of two hours a day. Hosing down of hard surfaces such as sidewalks and driveways is prohibited while the restrictions are in place.
Doyle said efforts to educate the public about watching wasteful water use is also helping.