DWS Declares Stage 1 Water Shortage in Upcountry

Effective immediately, the Department of Water Supply has declared a Stage 1 water shortage for all customers in Upcountry covering the areas of Haiku, Makawao, Olinda, Pukalani, Kula, Haliimaile, Omaopio/Pulehu, Keokea/Waiohuli, Ulupalakua and Kanaio due to a potential for reduced surface water flows and drier conditions this summer.

The state drought monitor spring forecast predicts a 70 percent chance of El Nino conditions for Hawaii. Spring forecasts tend to be less accurate with respect to later forecasts. El Nino conditions generally mean higher warmer ocean water temperatures causing drier conditions statewide. There is also a possibility that our next wet season, which normally begins in October, may be dry as well.

During the Stage 1 water shortage, all Department of Water Supply customers are being requested to voluntarily reduce water consumption by 10 percent by only using water when necessary and implementing water conservation measures, such as:

  • Water your lawn only when needed, reduce automatic irrigation time, water when the sun is down to avoid evaporation
  • Turning off water faucet when washing dishes, brushing your teeth, or shaving
  • Shorten the time when you shower or only partially filling tub for baths
  • Washing clothes using full wash loads and proper settings
  • Washing the car using a bucket or taking car to the car wash. Most of the car washes on Maui are fitted with recirculating water
  • Installation of low-flow fixtures by obtaining free low-flow shower heads, faucet aerators, toilet bags, hose nozzles and leak detection dye tablets for toilets from the department by calling (808) 463-3110
  • Check in and around homes for leaks

We kindly request all agricultural customers to reduce water consumption to the extent practical. By law, the Director of the Department of Water Supply, with the approval of the Mayor, is authorized to declare a water shortage whenever the water supply becomes inadequate in any area in the County due to a period of drought, an infrastructure or mechanical malfunction, natural disaster, or other event causing a water shortage. A Stage 1 water shortage exists if the Director determines that anticipated water demand in an area is projected to exceed available water supply by 1 to 15 percent.

Call the 24-hour hotline at (808) 270-7633 if a water related problem occurs or if there are any questions.

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