WASCO Systems Drying Up – St. Lucia Times

The content originally appeared on: St. Lucia Times News

The Water and Sewerage Company Inc. (WASCO) has announced that the current dry spell with reduced rainfall and increased evaporation has significantly impacted its systems.

“Most of our systems are beginning to dry up,” Chief Executive Officer Zilta George-Leslie told a news conference Wednesday.

George-Leslie disclosed that rapid water evaporation was affecting the company’s systems, coupled with low river flows.

By way of example, she explained that the John Compton Dam level was down to 325 feet as of Wednesday morning when usually the level would be 333 feet.

The John Compton Dam system serves  Cap Estate to Millet and Cul de Sac areas.

‘Drastic reductions’ have also impacted WASCO’s Southern system from Canaries to Dennery, resulting in decreases ranging from twenty to eighty percent depending on the community.

As a result, WASCO has urged customers throughout Saint Lucia to store and conserve water.

However, the company explained that the biggest challenge is that customers still need to change their water consumption patterns.

WASCO has instituted water rationing and is trucking water to customers in some areas.

In addition, the company has expressed concern over the appearance of old tyres in the Talvern River, creating a dam in the river bed.

WASCO suspects it was the work of a farmer, negatively impacted by the dry spell.

“A lot of farmers do not use potable water. They use water from the rivers, so we are crying out to the farmers as well not to carry out those sort of practices because that in itself is affecting our levels and our flows,” CEO Zilta George-Leslie told reporters.

Regarding possible water source contamination, the company explained that treatment plants would filter out most contaminants.

In addition, treatment plants have ponds with fish.

WASCO monitors the fish daily, and should there be any fish kills, it alerts officials to intervene with crisis management.