Layla (left) and Laura Sterndale-Smith from Sydney enjoying the rain while on holiday at Point Danger.
Layla (left) and Laura Sterndale-Smith from Sydney enjoying the rain while on holiday at Point Danger.

Rainfall had no impact on Tweed’s water crisis

RAINFALL on the Tweed has not impacted the water shortage crisis as Clarrie Hall Dam continues to drop.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Abrar Shabren said a shift of an inland trough would bring isolated heavy rainfall this weekend but would fall on the coastal fringe.

"Most locations in the Tweed will see isolated heavy falls in the next few days," Mr Shabren said.

BoM figures showed Bray Park had about 23mm of rain this week but Tweed Shire Council says it was not enough.

Manager water and wastewater Anthony Burnham said the dam had dropped to 68.8 per cent and was still falling nearly 2 per cent a week.

"While the recent rain provided some relief on the coast and for thirsty lawns, it has not eased our current water situation, nor slowed the escalation of water restrictions to Level 3 on February 3," Mr Burnham said.

"History tells us we need at least 150 to 200mm of steady rain in the catchment over a few days to get any water into the dam. To lift water restrictions, we need in the order of 700 to 900mm over a few months - and the outlook for that remains poor."

Mr Burnham said without significant rainfall in the catchment, the Tweed would go to Level 4 water restrictions on February 28.

"The last time Level 4 restrictions were in place in the Tweed was 2002-2003," he said.

"Then, we received 930mm of rain in the catchment from February to May 2003 allowing us to lift restrictions.

"We need that sort of rain again in 2020."

He said data showed residents were not saving enough water by still using 184 litres per person a day - 40 litres a day more than the council's target.

"While this data suggests residents are not heeding the call to save water now, we acknowledge this figure may be inflated due to the recent influx of holiday-makers," Mr Burnham said.

"I again urge all residents and businesses to fully support water restrictions now to make our limited water supply last as long as possible."