Southern Downs moves to high water restrictions

Southern Downs Regional Council would like to remind residents that the Southern Downs region will move to high water restrictions beginning Thursday, 1 November.

Under the new restrictions residents will need to reduce their water use to 170 litres per day from the previous target of 200 litres per day.

The move to high water restrictions means residents can no longer use sprinklers and fixed irrigation systems, wash vehicles with a trigger hose or top up pools, spas, fountains and ponds.

Residents are now only allowed to use water outdoors on their allocated days between 6-7pm. The new restrictions mean residents may only use water outdoors for the following:

  • Hand held hosing of gardens only (not lawns)
  • Watering gardens using buckets
  • Washing vehicles with a bucket on grassed areas.
  • Allocated days for outdoor water use remains unchanged and are as follows:
  • Odd house numbers and no house numbers—odd calendar dates only
  • Even house numbers—even calendar dates only

Cleaning windows and vehicle windows, mirrors and lights with a bucket is allowed at any time.

As of 31 October, the region’s dam levels have changed little since the end of September despite the recent rain with the exception of Storm King Dam which increased roughly 3%.

The dam levels are as follows:

  • Leslie Dam sits at 9.36% (9945ML) and will run out of water in 20 months at current usage rate.
  • Connolly Dam sits at 62.4% (1533ML) and will run out of water in 15 months at current usage rate.
  • Storm King Dam sits at 70.3% (1616ML) and will run out of water in 14 months at current usage rate.

Councillor for Agriculture, Environment and Sustainability Cameron Gow said that with recent rain turning lawns and gardens green, some people might think they can relax when it comes to conserving water.

“Unfortunately the soil is so dry that it has soaked up most of the recent rain, and we have seen little change to our dam levels,” Cr Gow said.

“The restrictions are needed for the foreseeable future until we start seeing significant rainwater running into our dams, and Council asks all residents to remain vigilant in conserving water.”

Council is still offering a number of water saving tools and incentives for residents including water tank rebates, water saving shower heads, and timers for showers. Residents can now pick up water saving buckets from Council Community Contact Centres with a limit of one per household.

For more information on the water restrictions please contact Catherine Travers, Sustainability Officer, on 1300 MY SDRC (1300 697 372) or

To learn more about how Council can help residents and businesses save water, please visit Council’s website on, and to keep up to date with the latest news follow Council on Facebook.