Source: Harare water woes: Council speaks out | The Herald 28 DEC, 2018
Yeukai Karengezeka Herald Correspondent
Harare is experiencing water shortages after council’s water pumping capacity declined by about 40 percent due to a burnt transformer at Morton Jaffray Plant and deteriorating raw water quality.
In a statement, the Harare City Council said they are addressing the issues and the situation was expected to normalise by next week.
“We regret to inform our customers of the ongoing water challenges in the city. Over the past few weeks our water production at Morton Jaffray has been depressed, averaging 272 mega litres a day against a normal daily average of 450m/day,” it said.
“It is hoped that supplies should start improving by early next week.”
The city was said the transformer stopped working on Wednesday night.
“The termination kit for transformer number 4 was burnt on Wednesday night. As a result, the plant can only run with a maximum of four pumps, (2 big, 1 medium and 1 small) but the problem is currently being attended to,” read the statement.
On the water quality the city officials said the pH has decreased as a result of delayed rains and the abstraction periscopes were now within the algae zone.
The pH is a figure expressing the acidity or alkalinity of a solution on a logarithmic scale on which 7 is neutral, lower values are more acid and higher values more alkaline.
“Over this period, the raw water quality has deteriorated to an extent that the pH has averaged 9.46 in comparison with 8,4 for last year making the treatment process more difficult. This has been a result of the delayed rains which normally helps in diluting the lake”.
“The abstraction periscopes were now within the algae zone as shown by the high ingress of algae and fish into the treatment works.
“However, the pre chlorination HTH dosage has been increased to 2mg/1.This should result in improved algae removal through improved settlement, hence reduction in sludge carry-over to the filters,” read the statement.
Council said it was also engaging a contractor A.I Davis to introduce a chlorine gas dosing point for pre- chlorination.
Meanwhile, the local authority said works on Darwendale Pump Station is expected to be completed by January 7 next year.
“The contractor working on the Darwendale Pump Station lift has promised that the repair work will be complete by January 7, 2019.
“This will allow us to blend the better quality Manyame Dam water with Chivero water.”