(This article was first published on 27 January 2018 in the Weekend Argus, a weekly regional newspaper distributed in the Western Cape, South Africa.)

Written by Yazeed Kamaldien

City officials have confirmed they have identified 186 distribution sites for potable water should Day Zero arrive on April 12.

The city’s safety and security mayoral committee member JP Smith told Weekend Argus last night that they were still looking at 14 more sites.

Smith said technical teams were analysing the sites against a “lot of tough requirements”.

“We had to discard a number of our sites that didn’t meet the technical requirements,” he said.

Smith added: “We do not want to do this. We will only do it as a last resort. The message now is save, save, save water. We don’t want anybody to queue for water.”

“Don’t wrap your mind around the disaster situation. We will work with that if it happens. It will work but it will be unpleasant.”

Smith said setting up the sites would cost the city R200-million and if more were required the cost would increase. He said the city would also have to spend money to rehabilitate fields were the roll out would occur.

This was in addition to R5,4-billion which the city needs for other projects, including desalination and extracting water from aquifers.