Tighter water restrictions for Okato and Inglewood

10 February 2020

High water use, low river flows and continuing dry conditions have led to a ban on using water outdoors in both Inglewood and Okato from today, while the rest of the District is asked to remain Wai Warriors to help save water.

The ban means residents can’t use water in their gardens or for cleaning windows or cars and comes as the towns’ waters sources, the Mangatete and Ngatoro streams, continue to run very low. 

NPDC data for the week ending 2 February reveal Okato residents used one million litres more than for the same period in 2019, up from two to three million litres, and while Inglewood’s use is the same as last year, figures show the town had just 50mm of rainfall in January, that’s 37% of the average monthly rainfall for the township.

“We need substantial rain over a decent period before the streams’ flows will rise again. With the long-range forecast predicting just a few showers coming our way it’s vital that Okato and Inglewood residents stop using water outdoors so we can conserve water,” says NPDC Infrastructure Manager David Langford.

“The very low levels in the Ngatoro stream are leading to a rise in algae in the stream which affects the taste of water in Inglewood. It’s another key reason why residents should be Wai Warriors and cut down their water use.

“For everyone else in the district, water restrictions mean using only hand-held hoses on the odds and evens system – no sprinklers, irrigation systems or unattended hoses are allowed. Even so, we encourage all of NPDC’s water customers to reduce their water consumption as summer continues.”

Tips for using ‘grey’ water in the garden

  • Okato and Inglewood residents can still use grey water from washing machines, baths or showers in the garden.
  • Just be careful what detergents you use in your washing machine – read the back of the packet as it usually says if the product is greywater-safe.
  • Putting a bucket in the shower when you use it can also capture water that would otherwise go down the drain. 

Read more water saving tips, or check out water saving advice from our Three Waters Education Officer Denise Rowland.

Mangatete Stream Okato