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Water rationing still ongoing in VI

Water & Sewerage Department in Tortola. Photo: VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – Low water resources continue to affect consumers adversely in the Virgin Islands with residents being compelled to endure water rationing in some areas over extended periods of time. These interruptions are reportedly due to constraints being experienced by the Water & Sewerage Department (W&SD).

Virgin Islands News Online understands that some areas such as Great Mountain have been put on a schedule which was previously released by the W&SD over a month ago. The previous schedule indicated that the Great Mountain area would access water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Some areas did not have any water on Saturday but it was explained it would resume today, Tuesday, as per schedule. 

Water supply appeared to return to normalcy during the month of August. However, just after tropical storm Isaac departed the scene, a water rationing programme abruptly returned. Some residents have had to go consecutive days without potable water. 

This news site spoke with Public Relations representative, Natasha Deane of the Water & Sewerage Department, and was told that some areas are to revert to their old schedules as previously announced in the media. Announcements were previously done through radio and online media. No new announcements appeared evident at the time of this report.

Residents who may have been wondering about the sudden return to water rationing should note that this remains an ongoing process until reservoirs have been restored to their normal functional capacity. It remains unclear how soon this would be.

Deane promised that a release would be sent out shortly as a reminder for residents including those who may be unaware of the issues affecting the Department and community at large.

Minister for Communications and Works, Hon. Mark Vanterpool, had expressed in July that demand for water in the Territory usually increases around the summer period. This he had suggested may be due to several factors including the increase in vistors to the Territory and additional demand caused by children being at home.

In an earlier release from the Department sent in March 2012, it was announced that the Water & Sewerage Department had recently been experiencing a significant increase in demand for the supply of water from customers in the western region of Tortola.

The release further stated that, after initial evaluation, the Department decided to take the following measures:

1. The introduction of a water rationing programme for the supply of water to customers in the western region of the island, including West End, Towers and Long Bay; and

2. The introduction of a booster station to supplement the West End water supply from the Sea Cow’s Bay Water Plant. This booster station was expected to be placed at Cox Heath.

In introducing the water rationing schedule, affected customers should expect interruptions in their regular water supply during certain hours of the day; these periods would be announced in advance.

Customers would then be able to plan accordingly. The downtimes will be necessary to allow water levels to be rebuilt. Areas located at higher elevations are expected to be more significantly affected.

The Water and Sewerage Department assured affected customers that it was taking all available measures to reduce and eliminate the water shortage being experienced. A subsequent Public Notice followed along with an update as well as the water rationing schedule.

They expressed regret for any inconvenience that the rationing programme caused and asked for customers’ patience and understanding, as it strove to provide a continuous supply of potable water to all residents of the Virgin Islands.

It was discovered that leaks in the west end area were the cause of the problem then in addition to a broken line. Meanwhile, telephone systems at the W&SD appear to have been restored to working order following the recent announcement of a service interruption being experienced. Customers were at the time encouraged to contact a list of alternative numbers to contact various Divisions and individuals of the Department in the interim.

9 Responses to “Water rationing still ongoing in VI”

  • Rat's Tail (28/08/2012, 07:05) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is pure Bull S22t and everyone knows it. Tell the government to stop frustrating Biwater so they can get on with their job of producing water.

    If government commission the new reservior Biwater built at Sabbath Hill the people in Diamond, Ridge Road, Cane Garden Bay and elswhere won't have to be rationed.
    • jack be still (28/08/2012, 08:10) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Well, we done know the NDP and their agents trying all they can to get Biwater out and to say they did not full filled their contract…but the UK is watching them on Biwater like a hawk..let them try that they will see the wrath of the UK and the VIP will be right back in dey!!!
  • Disgusted (28/08/2012, 09:10) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    They got to ration it, with all the filth and ice that's coming with it. My skin has an outbreak of what my dermatologist call a fungus/ring worm. I'm stunned because I haven't suffered from that type of skin problem since I was a child- clearly from playing in murky waters, etc. The incessant itching has created several dark splotches all over my body. The smell alone of the water is so repugnant! What the heck am I bathing with? Soap and doodoo? Tell me why Tortola for such a small island, STILL cannot fix our sewage and water woes.
  • SCB frustated (28/08/2012, 09:53) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    "The introduction of a booster station to supplement the West End water supply from the Sea Cow’s Bay Water Plant. " ---- Is this a joke? Water from Sea Cows Bay? For many month now I can hardly ever have a shower after 9:00pm, because we have NO WATER IN SEA COWS BAY most nights!!!!!
  • insider (28/08/2012, 10:40) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Water and Sewerage Department in a mess Mr. Mark please pay some attention to up there!!!
  • biwater (28/08/2012, 14:06) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Low water pressure or high water pressure this same crap over and over again of no water for people to use...strupppsss
  • what'sup (28/08/2012, 14:14) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Why is it that the government are spending money on thing that IS NOT so important to us, such as the airport and the cruse ship dock but water and the hospital which is so importmant TO US ARE on a stand still help me people to see this picture whats wrong with it?
  • not so soon (28/08/2012, 23:40) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    water and sewerage aint going no way soon just talk to the staff

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