Coast dam levels dropping '1-2 per cent' each week: council
RAPIDLY dropping dam levels and record water consumption has prompted the council to warn residents about conserving water during the Fraser Coast's dry spell.
With water levels at Lake Lenthal and Teddington Weir dropping by one to two per cent a week, Fraser Coast mayor George Seymour said tougher water restrictions would need to be considered if the current usage could not be reined in.
Cr Seymour said about 32 megalitres was used in Hervey Bay on February 13 and 12 megalitres was used in Maryborough on January 29.
"To put that into perspective, that's over 30 Olympic swimming pools of water consumed each day in Hervey Bay and in Maryborough it's more than 10 pools," Cr Seymour said.
"That's why the council is encouraging residents to keep an eye on their water use.
"It will not only save you money by helping you avoid a big water bill but it will also help us delay or avoid tougher water restrictions."
Water levels in Lake Lenthal are at about 81 per cent while Teddington Weir stands at 93 per cent.
Level one water restrictions currently apply to all Fraser Coast residents but moving to level two would mean watering gardens and driveways would be subject to heavy restrictions.
The warning comes as the Fraser Coast continues to suffer through one of its driest periods on record.
Last month was the driest recorded January in Hervey Bay since the Bureau of Meteorology started recording rainfall in 1999, with only 3mm falling in the 31 days.
Maryborough received about 6.8mm of rain last month, making it the driest January since 1882.
Cr Seymour said strategies like using mulch in gardens to retain moisture and limiting their watering times to twice a week were good options to save water.
"We know there are a lot of brown lawns around town, but we just encourage everyone to stay water-wise to save time and money," he said.