August 5, 2008

Falls Lake Water Supply at 260 Days

By The News & Observer, Raleigh, N.C.

Aug. 5--RALEIGH -- Falls Lake is 7 inches below full, with enough drinking water to last for 260 days, or until April 22, 2009, Raleigh officials said today.

Falls Lake supplies drinking water for Raleigh and six other towns in Wake County.

The lake's level is 2.4 feet above the level recorded this time last year.

Demand for water has dropped since the city began restricting its use. Raleigh water customers have been using 53.1 million gallons per day, up slightly from last month. But the demand is down 14 percent from this time last year, when customers were using 61.9 million gallons per day.

Since May 21, when the city put into effect the Revised Stage 1 restrictions, the Raleigh water system has pumped an average of 52.2 million gallons per day, a 27 percent increase over the amount of water used when the city was under Stage 1 restrictions.

The Revised Stage 1 restrictions allow Raleigh water customers to irrigate their lawns twice a week. Stage 1 allowed irrigation only once per week.

Since April 7, the city has issued 102 citations that carry a $200 penalty for violations of the rules on water use.

The Falls Lake watershed is in moderate drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. But without significant rainfall, the watershed is expected to slip back into severe drought.


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