Water Conservation

Updated 10 March 2017



Updated 12 January 2017

Updated 23 December 2016

Hastings District Council Water Update

Updated 20 December 2016


Thanks again for your efforts with water conservation to date. With high demand and hot weather, our Hastings supply pumps are struggling to keep up. We want everyone to be able to water their gardens, but also need you to conserve water until Brookvale Bore 3 is recommissioned.

We need Hastings, Havelock North, Bridge Pa and Flaxmere residents to change your watering routine, so please only use your hand-held hoses and sprinklers on alternate days during the set hours.

What does this mean for you?

Please only use hand-held hoses and sprinklers on alternate days between 6am and 8am, and 7pm and 9pm as follows:

Even numbered houses on even days of the month
(e.g. If you are number 104 you may water on the 2nd, 4th, 6th … of the month)
Odd numbered houses on odd days of the month
(e.g. If you are number 201 you may water on the 1st, 3rd, 5th … of the month)

For further info please visit www.hastingsdc.govt.nz

Hastings District Council's water alert level is currently on level 2 for Hastings, Flaxmere, Bridge Pa and Havelock North. Areas outside of Hastings, Bridge Pa, Flaxmere and Havelock North remain at Level 1


What are the levels? 

Level 1: Voluntary action to conserve water, discretionary use such as the use of sprinklers, washing cars permitted. 

Level 2: Sprinkler and hose restrictions. These can be used between 6 and 8am and 7pm and 9pm only as follows:

  • Even numbered houses on even days of the month (e.g. If you are number 104 you may water on the 2nd, 4th, 6th … of the month)
  • Odd numbered houses on odd days of the month (e.g. If you are number 201 you may water on the 1st, 3rd, 5th … of the month)

Level 3: Sprinkler ban. Hand-held hoses can be used on alternate days between 6 and 8am and 7 and 9pm only. 

Level 4: Total ban on all outdoor water use. No sprinklers or hand-held hosing.


Frequently Asked Questions

Is this a water shortage?

No; there is ample water in the aquifer that lies under Hastings and wider Hawke’s Bay. The problem has been that the pumps drawing water from that aquifer have at times been unable keep up with the rate at which we are using water. Compounding the problem is that the Brookvale bores are turned off in the wake of the water-borne illness which affected Havelock North in August.

What areas are affected by the Level 2 water restrictions?

Hastings, Havelock North and Flaxmere are affected by the Level 3 water restrictions.

Residents on other town supplies: Clive, Te Awanga, Waimarama , Omahu, Whakatu, Whirinaki and Paki Paki remain on Level 1 which allows discretionary water use (garden watering, car washing etc).

What can /can’t I do?

The Level 2 restriction means that garden watering (using spinrklers and hoses) is allowed between 6am and 8am and 7pm and 9pm only. Vehicles (cars, boats etc) can be washed although we ask that you don't unless you really have to, and swimming pools can be filled and topped up.

How do we keep our gardens alive?

Plants survive best when they are given a good soaking every few days, rather than a ‘sprinkle’ more often. Every two to three days give the garden a good watering between the hours of 6am and 8am or 7pm and 9pm. We are asking that you let your lawn ‘brown off’; it will come back to life once rain returns.

Are the water restrictions a direct result of the Havelock North water contamination?

They are, in that the two bores that carried the contamination have been turned off and Havelock North is being supplied from the Hastings supply. Having those two bores turned off means there are less pumps to rely on to supply the town water.

Can Council turn these bores back on again?

The plan is to turn on one of the Brookvale bores (no 3), which involves installing treatment including ultra violet disinfection.  We are work as fast as possibly on reinstating the supply once water treatments are in place. Those treatments are ultra violet disinfection, filtering and chlorination.

What is Council doing about the leaks in the network that people are reporting?

We have experienced an increase in the number of leaks being reported since the August event.  Getting leaks fixed has proved tricky – not least because labour has been stretched. That has also been impacted in the last week as contractors have been seconded to earthquake hit areas in Wellington and Kaikoura. Council contractors City Care have been increasing staffing as well as working weekends. They are now making good progress on the backlog.

What is the impact of other water users on the town supply system (water bottling; irrigation etc) and can Hastings District Council ban other water users?

Hastings District Council does not issue water consents to any users (in fact Hastings District Council has to get its water consent from the regional council). All water users, including water bottling companies, get their consent to take water from the ground from the Hawke's Bay Regional Council. Therefore Hastings District Council is not in a position to control or stop the water take of other users. Because this water conservation issue is not about the amount of water (there is ample water in the aquifer) but about the ability of the town supply pumps to keep up with demand, the other users do not have any effect on it.


Using water wisely

What can I do to reduce my household water usage to help prevent further water restrictions? 

Tips in the Home 

  • Check for leaks and fix any leaking taps, pipes or cisterns.
  • Use 'eco' settings on dishwashers and washing machines if available and don’t run them until you have full loads 
  • Scrape dirty dishes rather than rinsing 
  • Turn off taps while brushing teeth 
  • Take shorter showers 
  • Limit toilet flushing the toilet, if it's yellow let it mellow, if it's brown...
  • store drinking water in the fridge instead of running the tap cold

Tips Outside the Home 

  • Don't water concrete
  • Water your garden during the cooler times of the day (morning or evening) to minimise evaporation and only water when necessary
  • Reuse 'grey water' from the washing machine on lawns and gardens where possible 
  • No sprinkler use or automated watering systems 
  • Use a bucket to wash your car, rather than a hose
  • Use a broom, not a hose to sweep paths

Water Useage Monitor 

To see how much water is being used in the Hastings District see the Water Useage Monitor.