Joburg residents should brace themselves – and start filling their water pails – before a scheduled maintenance shutdown that will knock out water across the city next week.
Johannesburg Water says this shutdown is necessary to complete maintenance and modernization requirements at Rand Water’s Eikenhof pumping station.
As Rand Water supplies water to Johannesburg’s reservoirs, many customers who rely on these systems – as well as areas that receive water supplies directly from Rand Water – will not have access to water supplies during the shutdown, which is set to take place from next week night. Tuesday (7pm) to Friday morning (5am), (July 11-14), and possibly a few days later as the system restores itself.
The Rand Water Daleside pumping station will also be affected during the closure, as will the Yeovil reservoir in Johannesburg Water.
Jhb Water said the planned shutdown was initially scheduled for June 20-22, but the entity requested the delay in order to provide relief to those areas that were facing water supply challenges in the previous weeks.
Jhb Water estimates that full systems recovery could take between five and 14 days after the supply is fully restored on Friday morning.
like Logan Monsame, Technical Director, Johannesburg Water Explained during last year’s water restrictionsWater is not the same as electricity. [With] Electricity, if the power goes out, when the power comes back on, you hit a switch and the light comes back on in a few seconds, or even in a second.
“With water, you supply water through a long series of pipelines. If the reservoir becomes low or empty, it sometimes takes up to days, or even weeks, to restore that storage.”
Why is this happening?
The purpose of the planned shutdown is to complete the connection of the A19 and B14 pipelines with a new pipeline, installation of isolation valves, and systems upgrades at Rand Water’s Eikenhof pumping station.
According to Johannesburg Water, the shutdown of the pumping station is needed to provide a window period for maintenance interventions that cannot be carried out while the station is in operation.
And a maintenance shutdown is beneficial, “to upgrade infrastructure, improve its reliability, keep it operating optimally and improve its reliability.”
The entity added, “Reliability is compromised when maintenance is not performed, leading to unplanned shutdowns. A reliable plant is a safe plant.”
explained Professor Anthony Turton, a water resource management specialist at the University of the Free State’s Center for Environmental Management Daily Maverick It is necessary for maintenance and updates to require shutdown.
“These pipelines are hundreds of kilometers long and contain millions of liters of water under very high pressure,” Thornton said. who was also the former Vice Chair of the Research Advisory Committee for the National Water Resources Strategy at CSIR.
“It is impossible to weld the necessary devices into a steel tube under pressure.
“The real story is that Joburg Water has lost its spool capacity due to low storage capacity per capita. This increases the impact on customers.”
What you need to do to prepare
Johannesburg Water asked customers this week to start storing water at least 48 hours before the start of the shutdown (which is Sunday 9 July), or earlier, to maintain capacity within the affected infrastructure.
Not only will this reduce the impact on tanks and towers, but it will also help them recover faster after shutdown.
However, Johannesburg Water asked customers not to store water the day before the shutdown, as some of its tanks will already be closed to retain capacity on the supply side.
Johannesburg Water said it would make arrangements for alternative water supplies in hospitals, clinics, schools, municipal offices, police stations and shopping centres.
Find out if you are affected and where to get replacement supplies
Check where you go for an alternative water source:
Please use these alternate places to get water while the water is shut off. AG^ pic.twitter.com/6Ugo0xJ64A
– Johannesburg Water (JHBWater) July 6, 2023
check Johannesburg Water Official Social Media Platforms to get regular updates on damaged infrastructure (tanks, towers, live feeds) and replacement supplies. DM