CAPE TOWN, The taps of the City of Cape Town, South Africa's second largest metropolis, are expected to run dry sooner than anticipated following a drop in dam levels this week which has brought Day Zero closer.

Unfortunately, due to a drop in the dam levels of 1.4 per cent, Day Zero has, as of today (Tuesday), moved forward to 12 April, 2018, said the City's Executive Deputy Mayor Alderman Neilson.

Earlier, before the recent drop in dam levels, Day Zero was set to arrive by April 22, 2018.

Neilson appealed to Capetonians who are not saving water to start doing so. To those of you who are not yet part of the massive water-saving efforts that are under way in Cape Town, we urge you to join friends, neighbours, colleagues and Team Cape Town as a whole in beating back Day Zero, he said.

The Deputy Mayor, however, remained hopeful that if residents pulled their weight, it was still possible to push back Day Zero. Now is the time to do so. We will not be getting second chances, said Neilson, who thanked Capetonians who have been redoubling their efforts to save water.

In preparation for Day Zero, the City is rolling out aggressive pressure management operations across the city.

The City is installing thousands of water management devices on the properties of high users and ensuring that we better our record low overall water loss percentage of 16 per cent as compared with the national average of 36 per cent, he said.

The City said their average first response time to reported leaks and bursts is less than two hours. Our desalination, aquifer and water recycling projects aimed at providing additional water are ongoing but will not provide sufficient supply to help us avoid Day Zero this year. They will, however, help us to become more resilient in weathering our next dry season, said Nielson.