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Cape Community preparing for Day Zero

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TALI FEINBERG

Dean Rosin, director of the Community Security Organisation (CSO), says the CSO, along with the Cape Jewish Board of Deputies, is working on an action plan “in line with our incident management system for the impending water crisis”.

Says Rosin: “While each communal organisation is looking inwards as to what they can individually do to prepare for the water crisis, it is up to us to plan for the greater community. Alongside the City of Cape Town and our communal organisations, we are putting together a plan of action should Day Zero arrive.

“The CSO is currently conducting a communal survey, sent to all communal organisations, to understand their capacity, requirements and individual plans, and this will help us put together our plan.”

United Herzlia Schools (UHS) will remain open across all its 10 campuses. “We have been planning for Day Zero for a number of months now and have plans in place to ensure a supply of both drinking and sanitation water. Our main concerns have been, and will remain, the health and safety of our children and staff,” wrote the directors in an email to parents this week.

The UHS has ordered a number of Atmospheric Water Generators, which are capable of generating a limited amount of drinking water each day. They are being delivered mid-March. “In order to ensure optimal levels of hydration for each person, we have to work together. In this regard, pupils and staff must bring a bottle of water to school each day for their daily consumption. Furthermore, we will be stockpiling drinking water at each campus.”
 
The larger schools have separate reticulation systems for drinking water and sanitation. When Day Zero comes, they will utilise water from the swimming pools and Jojo tanks to flush toilets and for basic cleaning.

Herzlia has purchased an additional 14 Jojo tanks (between 5 000 and 10 000 litre capacities) for the collection of rain water and the storage of any water that it manages to procure. “We have also purchased a water trailer to enable us to move water from one campus to another. If necessary, the three large swimming pools on our campuses can be used as a source of sanitation water,” said a school representative.

“A healthy and safe environment remains our priority. We have installed hand sanitisers in all our toilets and changerooms to prevent the spread of diseases. This unprecedented crisis requires that we all do our share to avoid a long-term catastrophe.”

Highlands House Aged Home director Harris Burman says: “Over the past two weeks, we have been meeting with the water inspector for our area to identify water-saving methods, such as using and recycling all grey water (at a cost to the Home), to be used for toilet flushing as well as after filtration and chemical methods will be recycled into the laundry. A small example: our laundry uses upward of some 800 litres of water per day.

“The department of water and sanitation also met with us and stated that it would be highly improbable that our water would be cut off. We would still be limited to 50 litres per person, per day. If we could not adhere to this limit, penalties would be imposed.

“It is thus inevitable that some of the methods that we are now going to have to adopt would have a direct impact on our residents, for example, showering three times a week and not daily, as well as bed linen being changed only when really necessary, such as twice monthly and towels weekly.”

Burman said that if anyone wanted to assist the Home, donations of 5 litre bottles of water would be appreciated. “The rest will have to be up to the staff and the residents acting responsibly at this time.”

The Cape SA Jewish Board of Deputies has met with representatives from the City of Cape Town to discuss the water crisis and its response, says director Joshua Hovsha. “We are currently surveying the needs of communal organisations and working with the City to ensure that we are fully prepared should Day Zero become a reality.

“We will also be working with the City on assisting with distribution and ensuring access to water for vulnerable groups and individuals within the city. Our focus will not simply be on Jewish people, but on assisting in areas where Jewish people happen to live.”

 

 

 

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. nat cheiman

    Jan 25, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    ‘Thank Nomvula Mokonyane of the SA government’

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