Water Restrictions In Place Across Tampa Bay As Dry Conditions Persist
Some counties have placed limited on water usage.
Counties across the greater Tampa Bay region have issued warnings or placed limits on water usage due to a lack of measurable rain.
The restrictions were issued as the entire region is under at least moderate drought conditions, with Sarasota County under more severe drought conditions.
On Wednesday, Sarasota officials issued a state of emergency for at least a week.
County officials are asking people to refrain from "unnecessary use" of such water, and have banned lawn irrigation until further notice.
Officials said they saw record demand of more than 31 million gallons of potable water on Tuesday.
Manatee County also is experiencing supply and demand issues, with the county keeping potable water at its minimum water pressure. They’re also asking customers to conserve water for the time being.
And Pinellas County officials are reminding customers to follow reclaimed water restrictions as well due to high demand. Those seasonal restrictions will be in effect through June 30.
The city of St. Petersburg on Thursday announced that it will be lowering the pressure on reclaimed water during the hottest hours of the day. That way, they said, will mean the "quantity of water will be sufficient for irrigating overnight and in the morning."
In addition, the Southwest Florida Water Management District is prohibiting campfires on all District campgrounds until further notice because of the dry weather conditions and high wildfire danger.
The Keetch-Byram drought index, which measures soil dryness, shows Southwest Florida is feeling the strongest effects of the lack of rain.
WUSF staff writer Mark Schreiner contributed to this report.