WEATHER GURU | Boring weather? Not in this neck of the woods


As we start enjoying lovely summer weather, we must remember what a diverse and interesting year we have had weather-wise. It has been anything but boring.

Starting at a low, with the drought, then on a high celebrating the rain, then back to complaining about wet cold conditions.

Then we moved into top gear with the dry hot summer ahead of us. Now we are back to complaining about dwindling supplies in our water tanks. The weather just never seems to satisfy everyone .

The total rainfall to date is 742mm, which is the highest since 2012, when 1,032mm was measured.

The above-average rainfall in October of 119mm contributed to this and did wonders for our dams, but then November yielded only 6.6mm, which is the fifth-lowest for November in 123 years.

Incidentally, November 2022 was just as dry and yielded a mere 4.8mm.

Overall 217mm was measured for spring (September — November) as opposed to the average 180mm. This was in line with the seasonal forecast prediction.

Water and rain, or the lack of it has been on our lips for the last five years, and interest in the matter remains high, while steep water tariffs are in place, even though most of our supply dams are at just under 100%.

Everyone is waiting for water tariffs to be reduced and restrictions lifted, so that they can start filling their swimming pools and watering their prized petunias.

With our combined dam levels at just under 79%, the public is expecting and even demanding some sort of reprieve after enduring water restrictions since 2018.

We last saw such dam levels in 2015-2016 — a few years later we were in trouble with dam levels becoming critical.

Since then, there have been numerous augmentation schemes, such as Nooitgedacht, Coega Kop and other borehole projects, yet we are still not seeing light at the end of the tunnel.

On October 4 the department of water & sanitation (DWS) said a decision concerning water restrictions on the Kromme system would be made in November.

According to it the Impofu had not recovered sufficiently to lift restrictions.

November has passed and the public have not been informed of their decision.

Contrary to popular belief the metro cannot ease restrictions until DWS eases its restrictions on the supply to the metro.

Therefore, to stay within limits it must continue with the present tariffs to keep consumption down.

The public is weary at this stage and can't comprehend why restrictions can't be lifted and tariffs reduced, when combined dam levels stand at 79%.

If DWS and the metro wants any buy-in from the public regarding future water saving exercises, they cannot keep them in the dark.

A positive announcement on the matter would be a great Christmas gift to us, the cash-strapped public.


This week in history:

1950: Snow recorded in Cradock


Weather Safety Tips:

Even if it is cloudy, in the height of summer use sunscreen and wear a hat to avoid painful sunburn.


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