Drought forces Waimea water restriction

WAIMEA, Hawaii – Water consumers in and around Waimea must reduce water consumption by 25%, says the Hawaii County Department of Water Supply.

“Due to the continuing dry weather conditions,” water officials said in a notice issued Friday evening, the department is “declaring the affected area under WATER RESTRICTION effective immediately.”

The affected area has been defined as “from Waimea down to, but not including, Kawaihae Village Subdivision, Waimea Airport, Lalamilo Farm lots, and Puukapu-Honokaia-Nienie areas; South Kohala, Hawaii”

The Department of Water Supply also offers a list of ways residents can save water to reach the 25% goal:

  • Wash only full loads of laundry or dishes at a time.
  • Check faucets and pipes for leaks.
  • Serve drinking water only when requested.
  • Keep a container of drinking water in the refrigerator.
  • Do not let the faucet run unnecessarily.
  • When bathing, use water only to wet and rinse off.
  • Do not fill the bathtub.
  • Use a glass to rinse when brushing your teeth.
  • Do not flush toilets unnecessarily.
  • Stop lawn sprinkling.
  • Stop car and boat washing.
  • Stop dust control watering.
  • Use drinking water wisely.

Water supply also has tips for farmers and gardeners: “All agricultural users should keep water usage to a minimum. Irrigate only at night from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. This measure will reduce water loss due to evaporation and minimize water system drain during peak demand.”

A look at the statewide map from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows that Hawaii Island is abnormally dry, even on the windward side, although parts of Ka’u have actually escaped from the extreme drought status they were under a week ago.

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