NEWS

Vancouver water restrictions to stay for rest of summer

07/13/2015 08:56 EDT | Updated 07/13/2016 05:59 EDT
Scattered showers over the weekend brought a respite from the hot dry heat but Metro Vancouver's water reservoirs are still below normal, city officials say. As a result, water restrictions will continue for the rest of the summer.

"It wasn't enough rain to make an appreciable difference in the reservoirs, Jerry Dobrovolny, Vancouver's acting general manager of enginering services told reporters on Monday."We're still concerned about water use and water levels."

A record-breaking hot and dry May and June has left Metro Vancouver's water reservoirs at 75 per cent. Those levels are usually seen in late July or August. 

Stage 2 water restrictions now limit lawn watering to one day a week for all properties.

Limits on car and power washing

It also places limits on power washing which is still allowed for health and safety reasons, but not for aesthetic reasons. Car washing is permitted, but only with a nozzle equipped with a spring-loaded shut off.

The restrictions apply to the the district too. Crews have cut back on watering in parks and watering only manually rather than through automatic sprinklers. Over the last week, the fire department has dealt with 11 small grass fires.

Despite the severity of the hot weather, many residents continue to flout the new water rules.

City officials have issued 850 warnings and handed out more a dozen tickets in the last couple of weeks. Violators face a fine of $250 for disregarding water restrictions. 

Some water hogs still ignoring limits

Hundreds of water hogs across Metro Vancouver who continue to ignore watering restrictions have been warned to shut off their offending sprinklers or pay the price.

So far the City of Vancouver has issued five tickets for $250 and 755 warnings, according to city spokesperson Patricia MacNeil.

But she warns, with the new restrictions in place, first-time offenders will now be getting tickets, rather than warnings. 

Park rangers are going out every morning starting at 5 am to patrol green space and officials say the homeless who live in the park are being cooperative and not having camp fires.

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