Level 2 water restrictions came in place Tuesday 10 December 2019

As of Friday 27 December 2019, total water storage across Greater Sydney is 43.9%.

More than 85% of Sydney’s water is supplied by captured rainfall. Because of the current drought, dam levels have reached the lowest levels seen since the millennium drought.

Level 2 water restrictions for residents and businesses

Under the new Level 2 water restrictions:

  • gardens can only be watered before 10am or after 4pm with a watering can or bucket
  • smart and drip irrigation systems may only be used for 15 minutes before 10am or after 4pm
  • the use of unattended hoses is no longer permitted
  • hosing of hard surfaces is not permitted, unless in an emergency
  • cars can only be washed with a bucket or at a commercial car wash
  • a permit is required before filling a pool of any size.

Fines of $220 will apply for residents and $550 for businesses who don’t follow the restrictions.

Businesses who use outdoor water will need to apply for an exemption. If a business received a permit under the previous level of restrictions, they’ll need to contact Sydney Water to confirm it’s still valid.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said we would usually expected to have Level 2 water restrictions come into effect when dam levels reach 40%.

“Given the rapid rate of decline of our dam levels we have decided to enact the next level of restrictions sooner than planned,” Ms Berejiklian said. 

“We’re experiencing one of the most severe droughts on record and we expect introducing Level 2 restrictions to save 78.5 gigalitres of water per year.”

Macarthur residents are reminded to do their share in this time of unprecedented drought. If we all do our bit and save, it will make a big difference right across Greater Sydney. Limit your showers to 4 minutes and use the half flush on the toilet.

What are the water restrictions for businesses?

Level 2 water restrictions apply to businesses in Greater Sydney, the Blue Mountains and the Illawarra.

  • You can only water your garden before 10am or after 4pm with a watering can or bucket
  • ‘Smart’ watering systems that include automated weather adjustment, a rain sensor or a soil moisture sensor and drip irrigation systems may only be used for 15 minutes before 10am or after 4pm
  • The use of unattended hoses is no longer permitted
  • Hosing of hard surfaces is not permitted, unless in an emergency or for health and safety reasons
  • You can wash your car with a bucket or at a commercial car wash
  • You will need a permit before filling a pool over 500L