Water Conservation Top Priority

JULY 13, 2005 -- Water conservation are two popular words in Onslow County which is suffering from a water shortage.

Renee Maiorano works with the county's water and sewer authority and says they are in a stage two water shortage.

"We've been in a stage two since 2002. What stage two is a mandatory water restriction," says Maiorano.

The county decided not to completely enforce the water restrictions.

"The board of commissioners, they actually limited it to just lawn watering. Watering your lawns, gardens, shrubbery and things of that nature."

Maiorano says many of the problems stems from tourism, because people who aren't from the area do not know about the conservation problems.

"So what we are going to do is get the word out to hotels, real estate agencies, and flyers with information to give tourists and tenants."

Some conservations tips the county is giving to residents include only doing laundry when you have a full load. Try to keep your showers under five minutes, and check for leaks inside and outside your home.

New Hanover County does not have a water shortage, but Jacqueline Major with Wilmington's water treatment division still wants to educate residents about conservation.

"We want to educate the public so they know what to expect in case we do have drought conditions or we do have to go into some type of voluntary or mandatory conservations measures," says Major.

Onslow County is building new wells and is expanding their water treatment plants. Mairano hopes the county will no longer have water shortages by next summer.

Reported by Kacey Gaumer