Invercargill water restrictions may ramp up if rain doesn’t arrive


The Invercargill City Council has not ruled out ramping up its water restrictions next week if rain does not arrive.

water sprinkler garden hose

Unattended hosing and sprinklers are already banned in Invercargill. Photo: 123RF

The council has already banned unattended hosing and sprinklers under the first stage of restrictions to protect the city’s sole water supply, the Ōreti River.

It was the first time water restrictions have been used since 2018.

A drought has been declared in Murihiku/Southland, with the agriculture minister announcing a $100,000 drought relief package for Southland and Otago farmers on Thursday.

NIWA figures showed Invercargill has had its driest summer on record, with the southern city receiving just 35 percent of its normal rainfall between December and March.

The restrictions were triggered once the river flow fell to or below certain levels as part of its permit to draw water.

The council said the level 2 restrictions banned all outside domestic use including washing cars and hosing watering gardens.

The council was monitoring the weather and river flow rates but a shift to level 2 was likely mid to late next week if the region didn’t get rain, a spokesperson said.

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