Water cops slap 37 Cape Town car washes with fines

26 January 2018 - 10:47 By Timeslive
File photo. Cape Town police have cracked down on car washes for using too much water.
File photo. Cape Town police have cracked down on car washes for using too much water.
Image: 123rf/ hxdbzxy

Thirty-seven Cape Town car washes illegally using municipal water were issued with fines on Thursday.

Staff from the city council‚ the police and the Department of Water and Sanitation visited 78 car washes in Kuils River‚ Khayelitsha‚ Sea Point‚ Fish Hoek‚ Mfuleni‚ Delft‚ Wynberg‚ Gordon’s Bay and Brackenfell.

The crackdown came less than 24 hours after TimesLIVE published a video that stirred up a hornet’s nest. In it‚ a resident questioned whether authorities were turning a blind eye to car washing in some parts of the city.

“How informed are our citizens? Or are they just negligent? Or do they choose to not care. Do we now as citizens who have saved water have to suffer because of those who never took it upon themselves to save water‚” asked the man who posted the video on social media.

Mayoral committee member JP Smith said another four fines were issued to people using municipal water to mix cement‚ and more than 150 hosepipes‚ buckets and other car washing implements were confiscated.

“While certain suburbs came in for special attention yesterday‚ we’re shifting focus to others today and beyond‚” Smith said on Friday.

“We are also looking to address the transport and sale of water from boreholes.”

Department of Water spokesman Sputnik Ratau said officials swooped on farms in the Malmesbury and Tulbagh areas on Wednesday.

He said officers from the Blue Scorpions checked on compliance with water-use licences.

“There was also interest in possible illegal diversions and illegal dams.”