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By James Ensor
Hometown Weekly Correspondent
In the hot and humid midsummer, it is only natural to be curious about the levels of water available to our communities. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts declared a Drought Advisory on July 8 for the region including the Dedham-Westwood Water District (DWWD). Eileen Commane at the DWWD spoke about the conditions affecting this district and the seriousness of the issues, as well as what ordinary citizens should be doing to help.
The current stage of outside watering restriction in the district is the ‘Mandatory Stage I-C.’ There are three stages of water restriction in the district, each with their own subdivisions and specificities. “I-C asks Westwood customers to only use sprinklers Tuesdays and Fridays between the hours of 6 a.m. - 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.,” said Commane. No lawn watering is permitted in the district on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays.
“You can still water plants by hand,” she added. “Using a hose or watering can is not restricted.”
The extended nature of the Drought Advisory suggests a lengthy dry period, which is confirmed by the predictions of weather forecasters. Meteorologists at The Weather Channel have predicted ‘Above Average’ temperatures for the Eastern seaboard of the United States. The average temperature for the month to date in the DWWD is 95 degrees. Fortunately, the ten-day forecast predicts some upcoming scattered thunderstorms.
If we can’t seem to beat the heat and the drought continues, the DWWD will still be able to meet supply. In December of 2005, the District was granted membership in the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, allowing it to purchase supplemental water when needed to ensure public health and safety during peak water use periods.
Although water levels are in decline, there is a long way to go before anyone who gets their water from the DWWD has to worry. For now, just be aware of the restrictions and soak up the sun!