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Water shortage in Batinah region

Normal supply to Batinah region may take another 24 hours

Gulf News

Muscat: Residents of Batinah region on Oman’s northern coast will have to bear a water shortage for one more day, according to a senior official with the Public Authority for Electricity and Water (PAEW).

“The leakage that caused a shut-down at the Birka Desalination Plant has been fixed but it would take time to resume normal supply to the consumers,” Zahraan Al Rashidi, a senior PAEW spokesperson, told Gulf News on Monday.

He explained that first the PAEW will have to fill up its own reservoir before the water supply can return to normal levels. “The supply is not cut off but the problem is of quantity,” he explained.

He denied reports that residents of Muscat’s Seeb disctrict were still facing a water shortage or that pressure was reduced. “There’s no problem in Seeb after [the] water shortage last week, the pressure is normal and supply is also normal,” he reiterated.

Seeb residents faced an acute water shortage last week and water tanker owners capitalised on this by charging arbitrarily for portable water.

Al Rashidi urged residents as well as citizens to use water carefully. “I urge our consumers to save water, not only in the current crisis but all the time,” he said, adding that the cost of desalinated water was too high to be wasted.

“We need to inculcate the habit of avoiding excess use of water,” he said.

He said that the suspension of water supply from the Birka Desalination Plant has depleted the PAEW reservoir, affecting the supply to consumers, especially in Batinah and parts of Dhakhlia region.

“We are optimistic that by today (Monday) evening our reservoir will be full so we can supply enough water to consumers by tomorrow (Tuesday) evening,” he added.

He assured that arrangements would be made to provide water through tankers as far as possible.