More of SA plunging into water crisis

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Baking temperatures in major parts of the country have pushed the Eastern Cape, Limpopo and North West provinces into “stress levels” as their dam levels dropped to below half in the past two weeks, water and sanitation spokesperson Sputnik Ratau  said on Wednesday.

Rantau said the dam levels in the three provinces had plummeted to below 50% in just two weeks, and there were amid fears that the situation could deteriorate.

Ratau said at 52,7%, KwaZulu-Natal was likely to join the fray soon, with parts of that province already experiencing severe conditions.

“The Joe Gqabi district, with eight towns under its jurisdiction, is the latest to join the drought-stricken areas in the Eastern Cape.

“The Orange River which runs through Aliwal North, Ugie, Mount Fletcher, Maclear, Lady Grey, Barkly East and Burgersdorp, is completely dry and most of the affected towns now rely on groundwater and water tankering,” Ratau said.

The Eastern Cape was declared a disaster area last week.

With the blistering heat causing the country to lose an average one percent of water a week, Ratau said, South Africans were hoping for heavy rains.

“It is predicted that the hot temperatures are likely to continue until the end of summer,” Ratau said.