If you have a well-point or borehole at home, you might be getting a call from the City of Cape Town to request that you allow one of their officials to pay a visit and conduct an inspection.
A number of residents have been getting these calls, but given the chance of fraudulent inspectors trying to gain access to your property, some have been asking if it is legitimate.
Kieno Kammies speaks to Xanthea Limberg, City of Cape Town Mayoral Committee For Water and Waste Services who confirms its water inspectorate teams are conducting city-wide inspections boreholes and well-points.
This is to ensure that the installations have not been unlawfully connected to the main water supply, following cases where poorly treated and untreated water had infiltrated the municipality's water supply system and affecting surrounding households.
These are to ensure they are not posing any risk to the property or to the broader network.— Xanthea Limberg, Mayoral Committee For Water and Waste Services - City of Cape Town
The inspectors will always carry positive municipal identification, staff ID and a peace officer's appointment card. But she says the staff is trying to make contact with residents beforehand to arrange the inspection.
Many of our staff are actually doing inspections over the weekends when property owners are at home.— Xanthea Limberg, Mayoral Committee For Water and Waste Services - City of Cape Town
How do you know if your borehole or well-point is compliant?
The team will do an on-site assessment and inform residents if there are any issues that need to be fixed.
Once this is completed and in order, the property owner will receive a formal certificate of compliance.
Installation of correct backflow prevention
We have sadly had experiences of some boreholes and well-point water flowing into our reticulation network and many properties we are visiting have not had the correct backflow prevention installed and this has resulted in water quality incidents and concerns.— Xanthea Limberg, Mayoral Committee For Water and Waste Services - City of Cape Town
Are fines being implemented?
Limberg says where there is non-compliance despite advice and assistance, it is able to shut off the water supply.
Heft penalties and fines are provided for in the by-laws as well as imprisonment, but the City is first trying to assist before implementing punitive action.
You cannot use your own homemade sign...
An official well-point or borehole sign is required outside your property, says Limberg.
There are only 12,000 registered boreholes.
Take a listen to what Limberg has to say below: