Level 2 water restrictions to start across Sydney

Published: 21 Nov 2019

Level 2 water restrictions will start in Sydney, the Blue Mountains and the Illawarra on 10 December 2019.

Water restrictions will take effect when dam levels in the region reach 45%, which is expected around mid-December 2019. Dam levels are currently close to 46% and continue to drop each week.

More than 85% of Sydney’s water is supplied by captured rainfall. Because of the current drought, dam levels have reached the lowest levels seen since the millennium drought.

Level 2 water restrictions for residents and businesses

Under the new Level 2 water restrictions

  • gardens can only be watered before 10am or after 4pm with a watering can or bucket
  • smart and drip irrigation systems may only be used for 15 minutes before 10am or after 4pm
  • the use of unattended hoses is no longer permitted
  • hosing of hard surfaces is not permitted, unless in an emergency
  • cars can only be washed with a bucket or at a commercial car wash
  • a permit is required before filling a pool of any size.

Fines of $220 will apply for residents and $550 for businesses who don’t follow the restrictions.

Businesses who use outdoor water will need to apply for an exemption. If a business received a permit under the previous level of restrictions, they’ll need to contact Sydney Water to confirm it’s still valid.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said we would usually expected to have Level 2 water restrictions come into effect when dam levels reach 40%.

“Given the rapid rate of decline of our dam levels we have decided to enact the next level of restrictions sooner than planned,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“We’re experiencing one of the most severe droughts on record and we expect introducing Level 2 restrictions to save 78.5 gigalitres of water per year.”

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