Duncan Enforcing Stage 3 Water Restrictions - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Duncan Enforcing Stage 3 Water Restrictions

DUNCAN Okla_ They're cracking down in Duncan on water conservation and handing out fines up to $250 to people who don't follow the rules.

Last week, Duncan let everyone know that they had entered Stage 3 restrictions, because Waurika Lake is so low. It limits outside watering to just two days a week, between midnight and 9:00 AM.

Waurika Lake sits at only 45% capacity after providing the city with water for years during dry conditions. According to Duncan Public Works Director Scott Vaughn, every resident conserving will mean more water for everyone in the city.

Gene Bartnicki said the situation at Waurika Lake is devastating, and the new regulations need to be enforced in town.

"Being 14-15 feet low or whatever it is, and then seeing water going down the streets, you wonder, ‘Are we going to have water to drink?,'" Bartnicki said.

Waurika Lake has been Duncan's primary water source for ten years. During that time, record heat and dry summers have shrunk it. There's no end in sight.

"Certainly, if we don't get adequate rainfall this Fall and this Spring, The lake levels are going to continue to drop," Vaughn said. "Evidence of the lake's low levels are all around us, from the discolored rocks in the background to this dock, which hasn't seen underwater in quite some time. So, the City of Duncan is stepping up their restrictions starting tomorrow, and they're ordering people who aren't following the ordinances to pay up."

They won't be cheap. First-time offenders will have to pay $100 to the city. Costs will keep going up from there. After three violations, residents will be slapped with a $250 fine.

"Just conserving water on any level makes sense if you think about it, especially in times when our own water supplies are getting lower than they normally are," Vaughn said. "It's important to conserve water in order to prolong that timeframe until that next rain does come, so that we have plenty of water."

Enforcing fines in the city will ensure water is used efficiently. Bartnicki said having water for his home is enough for him to make those small sacrifices like leaving out his lawn.

"It turns a little brown, but it doesn't die," Bartnicki said. "I prefer that over not being able to get a drink of water."

Officials say Duncan residents have already done a great job by conserving. They also say there are several ways you can continue to reduce your water usage. Running laundry and dishwashers only when they're full and adjusting sprinklers are just a few suggestions they recommend to residents.

Vaughn said there are other things you can do to conserve water usage.

- When washing dishes by hand, don't let the water run while rinsing. Fill one sink with wash water and the other with rinse water.

- Consider upgrading refridgerators, air conditioners and ice-makers with air-cooled appliances.

- Adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered instead of the house, sidewalk, and street.

- Run your clothes washer and your dishwasher only when they are full.

- Choose shrubs and ground covers instead of turf for hard-to-water areas such as steep slopes and isolated strips.

- Install covers on pools and spas and check for leaks around your pumps.

- Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Compost vegetable food waste instead.

 

 

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