A broken pump on the Oconee River has prompted Milledgeville’s water department to ban outdoor water use until further notice.
Residents must not use water to irrigate lawns, wash cars, fill swimming pools or for any other recreational use of water, according to a release issued Tuesday.
Customers also are urged to conserve water until further notice, by order of City Manager Barry Jarrett.
“We’re not able to pull the quantity of water we usually do,” Jarrett said Tuesday afternoon.
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A portable, temporary pump could be in place by Wednesday morning to supplement the supply, but there is no clear time frame on when the pump will be repaired.
A crane is expected at 8 a.m. Wednesday to begin digging up the damaged pump so it can be taken for repairs.
Although Tuesday afternoon storms brought welcome rain, the pump problem comes in a dry period for Milledgeville and much of Middle Georgia.
According to the latest Drought Monitor, communities from Columbus to Augusta are experiencing abnormally dry conditions, the lowest level on the drought scale.
The area includes Baldwin, Bibb and Jones counties and half of Houston and Monroe counties.
Drought conditions are reported in the northern third of Georgia, with extreme drought reported in the extreme northwest corner of the state and in the area of Athens and Commerce in the counties of Banks, Franklin, Elbert, Hart, Madison, Jackson and Clarke.