Saturday, February 20, 2021

Emergency Water Use Restrictions Issued

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For Immediate Release: February 20, 2021
Contact: Austin Water Media Desk -

Emergency Water Use Restrictions Issued

Along with the boil water notice, effective Wednesday, February 17, 2021, and continued communications urging only essential water use, Austin Water has learned of unneighborly water use in our community. As a reminder, essential water use and conservation are needed in order to pull out of this emergency event. As such, Austin Water Director, Greg Meszaros, has issued emergency water use restrictions.  

Austin City Code Chapter 6-4-20 allows the Director to enact emergency restrictions to protect public health during an unusual operations event. Due to the significant water loss caused by the recent extreme weather, our reservoirs across the city have been heavily depleted. We need to meet a minimum amount of storage in those reservoirs in order to build water pressure for the entire system to be operational. It is mandatory that our customers conserve water so that we can continue to fill our tanks as our crews continue to repair pipes and infrastructure. 

During this period and until further notice, all outdoor water use is prohibited. Customers may not: 

  • Use water for irrigation or testing of irrigation equipment 

  • Wash vehicles, including at commercial car wash facilities 

  • Wash pavement or other surfaces 

  • Add water to a pool or spa 

  • Conduct foundation watering, or 

  • Operate an ornamental fountain or pond, other than aeration necessary to support aquatic life  

Violations of these restrictions should be reported to Austin 3-1-1. Austin Water appreciates your support in reducing water use to help stabilize Austin's water treatment plants. 
The emergency water use restrictions are necessary to ensure water is available for hospitals, firefighting, power plants and other primary needs. 

Austin Water has issued a city-wide boil water notice for all customers. To ensure that water is safe, customers are asked to boil water that is used for drinking, cooking or ice for two minutes.  

The Austin-Travis County Emergency Operations Center will remain active through the remainder of this situation and will be providing updates as conditions change. 
For more information, visit