December exceptionally dry
December was an exceptionally dry month according to Guernsey Water's latest monthly water supply report.
The December report released today (Monday 9 January, 2017) shows a slight reduction in stored water resources, from 81% at the end of November to 79% at the end of December, which is still considered reasonably healthy.
Although the utility is not overly concerned at this stage, it is reminding customers to use water wisely and to report any water leaks or signs of pollution in streams, which are a valuable source of water.
Stephen Langlois, general manager of Guernsey Water, said: "Normally December is the first winter month when we would expect to see a significant amount of rainfall to recharge our reservoirs, but this did not happen in 2016.
"Although total water resource levels are still reasonably healthy the reduction last month is particularly uncommon and something we have not experienced in the last decade, which tells us just how dry December was."
Visitors to St Saviour's reservoir will have noticed that the water level is lower than normal at this time of year. It was at a similarly low level in 2009 and 2011, but during both these years the level had increased again by the end of the year.
St Saviour's reservoir is just one of 17 water storage points on the island; the one with the greatest capacity is Longue Hougue.
"At this stage, with several months of potential recharge ahead, we are not overly concerned and consequently we are not planning to implement any water restrictions. However, we are keeping a close eye on the situation, monitoring water quality very closely and maximising the availability of our current water resources," said Mr Langlois.
Guernsey Water is also preparing to collect as much water as possible as soon as weather conditions change.
"Water is a valuable resource at all times of the year, not just the summer and we would like to remind customers to use it wisely," said Mr Langlois.
The top six storage reservoirs on the island (in order of capacity) are: Longue Hougue, St Saviours, Juas, St Andrews, Hougue Ricart and Grosse Hougue. Guernsey Water is also responsible for 65 kilometres of raw water mains which are used to collect and transfer water between these reservoirs.
Longue Hougue reservoir at full capacity supplies 15,880 homes and contains over 1,000 megalitres; enough to fill over 400 Olympic swimming pools. Its capacity is greater than that of St Saviour's Reservoir. Previously a working quarry, it is 60 metres deep.
Water leaks or stream pollution can be reported through our website (www.water.gg) or social media pages, customers can also call our 24 hour customer contact centre on 239500 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org