Welcoming a light band of rainfall in the catchment region over the weekend, MidCoast Council says much more is needed as severe level four restrictions begin today for much of the area.
Late last Saturday afternoon, November 23 a light band of rainfall swept across the western side of the Manning Valley catchment bringing falls of up to 10mm.
This rainfall was consistent from Bulahdelah in the south to the Manning and Gloucester catchment areas.
However, just 1.0mm was recorded in Forster-Tuncurry overnight on Sunday, bringing the total for November to 4.4mm received over two days.
The driest November since records began was more than 100 years ago when no rain fell during the month in 1904.
"The rainfall that we did get across the catchment over the weekend will provide some short term relief, however it's been so dry that not much will end up as run-off into our rivers," MidCoast Council infrastructure and engineering services director, Rob Scott said.
The best falls were observed towards the very top of the catchment on Barrington Tops, where just over 40mm fell over Friday and the weekend.
"This level of rainfall should provide some base flow back into the Barrington River and will benefit the town water supply in Gloucester," Mr Scott said.
"We believe we will now be able to delay emergency level restrictions for Gloucester, perhaps by up to a month."
The rainfall has brought a slight increase in the height of water flowing in the Nowendoc River at Nowendoc and the Barrington River at Forbesdale.
Council's water team will continue to closely monitor the situation.
"We will need a lot more than what we have received this weekend before we can reduce restrictions."
All areas of the MidCoast Council region began severe level four restrictions today, Monday, November 25 - except for the Tea Gardens Hawks Nest area which remains on very high level three restrictions.
We will need a lot more than what we have received this weekend before we can reduce restrictions.Rob Scott
Severe (level four) restrictions ban all outdoor water use.
Residents can only use recycled, grey or rain water on gardens - there is a total ban on sprinklers or garden irrigation systems.
No car or boat washing is permitted and swimming pool top-ups are also banned.
Collect grey water by placing buckets in the shower, collect washing machine water or using kitchen sink water for use on the garden.
However, baby nappies or other soiled clothing is not suitable.
Businesses across the Mid Coast are required to limit any process water to the minimum necessary to maintain basic production.
Outside use of water by businesses is not permitted without an exemption.
Holiday accommodation providers will be provided with information, so visitors are aware of the restrictions.
Council will also work with affected businesses to mitigate the impacts of the restrictions.
MidCoast Council is also severely limiting water use.
From today council will only water sports fields and parks that are serviced by recycled or bore water.
Beach showers along with water at boat ramps and fish cleaning tables will be turned off.
Road crews are already using recycled water for road production purposes.
To download fact sheets for level three and four and find out more about water restrictions, head to theMidCoast Council website water restrictions page.
There's also lots of information to help households save water on the water saving page.