Our water experts continuously monitor the water supply and demand conditions to prepare for a potential water shortage. We’re committed to doing what’s necessary to manage a potential drought situation and meet our customers’ need for water. In order to conserve the available water supply and to protect the integrity of our water supply facilities, we have adopted regulations and restrictions on the delivery and consumption of water during a drought. Please read our User Drought Contingency Plan (PDF) to learn about what we’ll do to ensure a secure public water supply.
How are drought stages issued? Good question!
Let’s define a drought – droughts are long lengths of time in which the land has a decreased water supply. There are two main causes that can lead to us issuing drought restrictions.
Source 1: High customer demand
As neighborhoods use a lot of water for outdoor water uses, that can cause the water supply to be used up faster than it is being replenished. Because of this, it’s important to conserve water so there is a normal supply for daily domestic use.
Source 2: Required by our water source authority
To protect the water source (either a surface body of water or an aquifer) and our ability to manage our supply, regulatory authorities monitor the levels of the water sources and see if the sources are being recharged by rain or other factors.
If the regulatory authority notices the level of the water source is decreasing and being recharged, it notifies the utilities that use it’s water source.
Once we are informed of a drought level, we must reduce our water usage. You will be notified by text and/or email as well as on the back of your monthly bill.
From there, it’s up to all of us to reduce and conserve our water usage so that everyone has enough water for basic tasks.
Water Conservation is a Way of Life
Do your part to conserve our precious supplies by small, thoughtful changes in your daily activities and habits. Small changes, if done on a large scale, add up to a big change. Every drop counts and every person can make a difference. Check out our water conservation section.
Please be respectful of our water supplies and reduce the impact of drought and water shortages by conserving water.
How bad is the drought? See for yourself – a map of the Texas region from the U.S. Drought Monitor features areas of water shortages (new analysis released every Thursday).
Understanding Drought Water Usage Restrictions
The following applies to Texas customers of SouthWest Water-owned utilities. The User Drought Contingency Plan (UDCP) is a detailed document that outlines the restrictions in place for each drought stage and is meant to help you reduce the impact of drought and water shortages. There are five stages (as listed below), and whenever a neighborhood is under drought stage notice, you will be notified by text and/or email, as well as on the back of your monthly bill. Additional information will be listed on this web page.
- Stage 4 – Exceptional (40% Mandatory Reduction)
- Stage 3 – Critical (30% Mandatory Reduction)
- Stage 2 – Alarm (20% Mandatory Reduction)
- Stage 1 – Mandatory (10% Mandatory Reduction)
- Awareness – Voluntary (10% Voluntary Conservation)
Please review the User Drought Contingency Plan (PDF) for details on restrictions and protocols.
Drought Stage Notices are in Effect for the Following Neighborhoods:
Awareness – Voluntary (10% Voluntary Conservation):
Aurora Vista, Briarwood Harbor, Pine Trail Shores
Stage 1 – Mandatory (10% Mandatory Reduction):
Bavarian Hills, The Cliffs, Comanche Harbor/Ports O Call, Country Bend, Enchanted River Estates, Garden Oak, Inverness Point, Oakview, Oak North, Oak Trail Shores, Oak Village North, Plum Creek, Rim Rock Ranch, River Bend Estates, Stagecoach Hills, Western Lake Estates
Stage 2 – Alarm (20% Mandatory Reduction):
Cascade, Cedar Springs, Center Point, Comanche Cove, Coolcrest, Crowley, Heritage Park, Hills & Dales, Holiday Villages of Medina, Lake Medina Shores, Mid-Tex Utilities, Oak Ridge, Platten Creek, Rocky Creek, Southern Hills, Verde Park, Vista Hills, Westwood Oaks Park, Windmill Ranch, Winwood Oaks, Woodhaven Park
Stage 3 – Critical (30% Mandatory Reduction):
Holiday Villages of Medina, Lake Medina Shores, River Oaks Ranch
Stage 4 – Exceptional (40% Mandatory Reduction):
River Oaks Ranch
Notice to Plum Creek Residents: Under extraordinary drought circumstances, we may require Plum Creek customers to further reduce consumption to meet Barton Springs/ Edwards Aquifer Conservation District drought restrictions. We will notify you should such an event occur.