Current drought conditions are putting a strain on the water supplies of the First District Water Department and the South Norwalk Electric and Water Company, which both provide drinkable water to Norwalk residents. Water levels could get dangerously low if the area does not get a significant rainfall in the future. Both companies have asked their customers to reduce water usage voluntarily.
In order to help preserve water for drinking, sanitation, and fighting fires, Mayor Harry Rilling is declaring a Water Emergency. Chapter 57 of the Norwalk Code of Ordinances gives the Mayor this authority.
This Water Emergency is effective on October 9, 2016 and will remain in effect until the water supply reaches an acceptable level. During this Water Emergency, the following activities are prohibited:
- Sprinkling, watering, or irrigating shrubbery, trees, lawns, grass, ground cover, plants and flowers, except when these items are intended for sale;
- Washing automobiles, trucks, trailers, or boats except at automated facilities using no more than 45 gallons of potable water per vehicle;
- Washing or flushing walks, driveways, pavement, porches, or other outdoor surfaces;
- Use of fire hydrants for purposes other than the protection of public safety by a public agency;
- Filling or draining ponds or lakes used for private or public recreational purposes; and
- Knowingly allowing leaking plumbing fixtures.
The Norwalk Police Department will enforce the conditions of this water emergency. Police officers will first advise violators to stop the prohibited activities. Then, if violators do not comply, they will be fined no more than $90 per day for each day the violation exists.
These rules are in effect to make sure we have water when we need it. Cooperation from the public is essential for this effort to be successful. For more tips on conserving water, please see the water department websites at www.firstdistrictwater.org and www.snew.org.