Official: Austin, Texas, may run out of water

Officials are urging residents of Austin, Texas, to cut water consumption by at least 15% so water treatment plants can catch up with demand as historic flooding continues to muck up lakes that supply the region's tap water.

Posted: Oct 24, 2018 6:36 PM
Updated: Oct 24, 2018 7:03 PM

Officials in Texas' capital city thanked residents for cutting water consumption so that treatment plants could catch up with demand, as historic flooding continues to muck up lakes that supply the region's tap water.

The outlook in Austin on Tuesday afternoon was far improved, as citizens heeded a call to cut consumption by at least 15%. Plants were producing more treated water than was being consumed and reservoirs were refilling, officials said at a briefing.

"The good news is that you heard us and it's working," said City Manager Spencer Cronk. "But we are asking you to keep your water conservation efforts."

City leaders said Monday in a statement that emergency conservation was required. A boil-water advisory remained in effect Tuesday, as the city works to filter "much higher levels of debris, silt, and mud" from the Highland Lakes.

But leaders now say the problem may be resolved in days, rather than weeks, as initially feared.

Outdoor water use has been prohibited, officials said, and violators may be reported to the city's 311 hotline.

Officials urged residents to forgo watering their lawns and washing their cars. Mayor Steve Adler said the community has pulled together. "That's one of the reasons why I love living in this city," he said.

'We want to do our part'

Businesses, especially restaurants, coffee shops and bars, have been hit hard by the boil-water advisory.

Preparing food and keeping facilities -- and employees' hands -- clean is tedious work, said Corona Coffee Company owner Naiman Rigby, who plans to close early to help save water.

"We want to do our part," he told CNN.

Rigby also has been giving bottled water to postal workers and teachers who come in, he said.

University of Texas-Austin student Benjamin Cohen said campus water fountains have been covered with trash bags. He and his roommates are using bottled water, as well as boiling and refrigerating tap water. They've also turned off their ice maker and aren't doing laundry or running the dishwasher.

"We don't want to use excess water," he said, "and also want to make sure the water we use is safe."

Nearby San Antonio also stepped in to help, sending a 5,000-gallon tanker full of clean water to help Austin residents, officials there said.

More rain forecast

It all comes as the Austin area is set for more rain.

Hurricane Willa, due to make landfall Tuesday in Central Mexico, is expected to bring 2 to 4 inches of rain to the area through Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.

The rain could aggravate already saturated grounds and swollen rivers but is not expected to produce widespread flooding.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 256827

Reported Deaths: 5638
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17257180
Hinds16331322
Harrison13567194
Rankin10804212
Jackson10453184
Lee8864141
Madison8314164
Jones6434112
Forrest6009120
Lauderdale5902186
Lowndes5405116
Lafayette499193
Lamar488565
Washington4803124
Bolivar3997109
Oktibbeha395381
Panola372379
Pontotoc367853
Monroe3558105
Warren354898
Union345960
Marshall344066
Neshoba3396152
Pearl River3301100
Leflore3041107
Lincoln298085
Sunflower286671
Hancock274459
Tate273162
Alcorn265453
Itawamba263759
Pike263778
Scott248046
Yazoo247056
Prentiss246552
Tippah243050
Copiah242749
Coahoma241054
Simpson236467
Leake231765
Grenada219471
Covington214672
Marion213073
Adams207070
Wayne202932
Winston201666
George199839
Attala194259
Newton193444
Tishomingo189361
Chickasaw185044
Jasper172736
Holmes168767
Clay159833
Stone144721
Tallahatchie141934
Clarke139862
Calhoun136521
Smith121424
Yalobusha117834
Walthall112336
Noxubee110822
Greene110429
Montgomery109834
Carroll104821
Lawrence102917
Perry102631
Amite98426
Webster92824
Tunica87321
Claiborne86625
Jefferson Davis85326
Humphreys83124
Benton82023
Kemper77620
Quitman6968
Franklin66715
Choctaw60913
Wilkinson58725
Jefferson54919
Sharkey43117
Issaquena1596
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 426543

Reported Deaths: 6126
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson62752920
Mobile30551554
Madison27303186
Tuscaloosa20835267
Montgomery19192305
Shelby18693114
Baldwin16513183
Lee12603101
Morgan12321113
Etowah11805168
Calhoun11206200
Marshall10236107
Houston8681148
Cullman8094105
Limestone807474
Elmore7923101
DeKalb771597
Lauderdale763183
St. Clair7599120
Talladega6224108
Walker5930174
Jackson583741
Colbert535473
Blount532083
Autauga522755
Coffee446256
Dale399781
Franklin368148
Chilton337865
Russell335910
Covington330168
Escambia321342
Dallas305196
Chambers288669
Clarke283133
Tallapoosa2630107
Pike251329
Marion247350
Lawrence245247
Winston229035
Bibb217047
Geneva203335
Marengo200829
Pickens196931
Hale177442
Barbour173836
Fayette171226
Butler170758
Cherokee160930
Henry155021
Monroe147317
Randolph141535
Washington138326
Clay127045
Crenshaw120244
Cleburne118423
Lamar118419
Macon116835
Lowndes111535
Wilcox103621
Bullock99728
Perry98219
Conecuh95120
Sumter89526
Greene76223
Coosa60515
Choctaw51524
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