WaterSource New Masthead


July 24, 2014  
In This Issue
Water Authority Board Declares Drought Alert Condition
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When in Drought, Save Every Day, Every Way - 30-second commercial
When in Drought, Save Every Day, Every Way - 30-second commercial

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San Diego County Water Authority

Water Authority Board Declares Drought Alert Condition with Mandatory Water-Use Restrictions

The  Water Authority's Board of Directors today unanimously activated the next stage of the region's drought response plan and declared a Drought Alert condition calling for mandatory water conservation measures to keep as much water as possible in storage for 2015.  It is up to the Water Authority's 24 member agencies to set appropriate restrictions for their communities.

As a wholesale water agency, the Water Authority plays an important role in coordinating drought response actions for San Diego County. The regional Model Drought Response Ordinance, adopted by the Water Authority's Board in 2008, establishes four levels of drought response with progressive restrictions. The strategy was designed to foster regional consistency and to align demand with supply during water shortages while minimizing harm to the region's economy.


The Water Authority's Board declared a Drought Watch condition in February to encourage increased voluntary water conservation. The move to a Drought Alert condition makes Drought Watch conservation measures mandatory, and it adds outdoor watering restrictions such as limiting landscape irrigation to no more than three days per week.  During the months of November through May, landscape irrigation would be limited to no more than once per week. Mandatory conservation measures for a Drought Alert condition in the regional ordinance include:

  • Limiting outdoor watering days and times
  • Watering only during the late evening or early morning hours
  • Eliminating runoff from irrigation systems
  • Repairing all leaks within 72 hours
  • Turning off water fountains and other water features unless they use recycled water
  • Using hoses with shut-off valves for washing cars (or patronizing commercial car washes that re-circulate water)
  • Serving water to restaurant patrons only upon request
  • Offering hotel guests the option of not laundering towels and linens daily
  • Using recycled or non-potable water for construction when available


Local rules vary based on regulations adopted by member agencies. Some member agencies already have implemented permanent year-round water-waste prohibitions or other measures to conserve water. For instance, the city of San Diego, the city of Escondido and several other member agencies have permanent mandatory water-use restrictions.


Click here for more information on the Drought Alert.


Click here for resources and rebates available to help cut water waste for your home, homeowners association or business.      

The San Diego County Water Authority works through its 24 member agencies to provide a safe and reliable water supply to support the region's $191 billion economy and quality of life of 3.1 million residents.