Lake Extraction vs Ground Water Well


Pictures say a thousand words, and we hope these new water system status images 'speak' to you. 

Bylaws and Water Use Restrictions are to protect the water source, the infrastructure, and all water users on the system.  The images are specifically designed to depict a lake extraction type of water system (a pipe submerged into a lake), or a ground water well based system (an inland drilled well). The RDOS has both lake and well based water systems.



Wells - Ground Water Source

STAGE NORMAL - the well is full and all is functioning normally. Sprinkling is permitted three days a week, the maximum allowable. The background blue colour denotes a healthy water supply. The system is operating efficiently as user demands are easily met and reservoir levels maintained. The spring freshet (snowpack melt) has sufficiently refilled the aquifer that supplies the well. 

Notice that the ‘stage’ bars are removed as restrictions are increased. 

Stage1Well 2 days per week STAGE 1 -  If dry weather conditions are coupled with a higher water demand by users, this may trigger a move to STAGE 2.    The pumping system(s) and reservoir(s) are working harder to keep up to demand. The colour has moved from blue to green and the creek in the image is beginning to dry up. Lawn sprinkling 3 days per week to relieve pressure on the system. Information will have been sent to users, to ask for additional voluntary reductions until the weather changes or recharges to the well rebound. 

STAGE 2 – The situation is deteriorating due to climate conditions - drought, system demands, and/or pressure on pumping and purveyance infrastructure. The background colour is now amber reflecting the current situation in the system. The creek is shrinking further. More than voluntary restrictions will be in place. Lawn and hand held sprinkling reduced to 2 days per week. RDOS Water Operations will be considering implementing sections of the system’s Emergency Response Plan.

Note: It is very rare that an RDOS water system has progressed to STAGE 2 or beyond. 


STAGE 3 – This STAGE is imposed in a severe drought or sudden shortage. The background colour has moved to a very deep amber. This is the last stage before the water supply is put into a critical situation when the well is unable to produce enough water for users on the system. Lawn sprinkling is prohibited, and only the most precious plantings watered by hand. Messaging from RDOS Water Operations to users will be increased significantly, and Emergency Plans implemented. Provincial authorities may also be involved.  

Note: This is an extremely rare occurrence.

Stage4Well STAGE 4 – The well and distribution system cannot supply water to users on the system. The background red colour denotes the serious situation and inability of the system to operate. The image shows the creek is dry, representing the situation in the aquifer where the well is drilled. The RDOS Water Operations will have implemented Emergency Response Plans to put back-up systems in place, Provincial Authorities may be involved and/or a State of Local Emergency may be declared. 





Stage Normal The lake is full, all is functioning normally and the system is operating well.  The pring freshet infill from snowpack melt, and precipitation has sufficiently filled the lake.  The system can easily meet the water cemand by users.  Lawn sprinling and watering allowed three days a week -year round maximum. 


Notice that the 'stage' bars are removed as restrictions are increased as water supply or availability is changing.  

Stage1Lake 2 days per week  

STAGE 1 – The lake level has dropped and no additional recharge or refill is evident (or predicted). The background colour has changed from blue to green. Allowable lawn sprinkling three days per week.


STAGE 1 can be implemented after a long dry spell in summer, when no apparent rains are forthcoming, or there is exceptional demand on the water system by users. 


STAGE 2 -  The lake levels are continuing to recede with no natural refill occurring. The background has moved to an amber colour. Allowable lawn sprinkling has reduced to once per week, and other water usage reductions are suggested or requested.  At this point other Provincial authorities may be requiring reductions in water use.                                                                            


Note: It is rare that any system in the RDOS has progressed beyond  STAGE 2


 STAGE 3 – Lake levels are dangerously low with little prospects for renewal. The background is now a deeper amber. Major efforts will have been undertaken by RDOS Water Operations to implement reductions in water use via mandatory restrictions. This is that last and final stage before a critical failure of the water system may occur. At the Stage, Water Operations will have implemented sections of the water system’s Emergency Response Plan.                           


 Note: It’s very rare that this stage has been implemented


STAGE 4 – Lake levels have reached critically low levels. The background red colour and reflects the severity of the water system conditions. Extreme measures would be in force prior to this STAGE. A potential inability of the system to supply water to users may result in water utility managers to fully implement Emergency Response Plans. Provincial Authorities or Emergency Operations may be activated in the region prior to, or in Stage 4