As of Wednesday, Sept. 25, the status of the Hillsborough West Fork Eno Reservoir is the following:

  • Depth: 39.1 feet
  • Percentage Full: 77 percent
  • Days of Water Supply Remaining: 210
  • Average Hillsborough Water Usage for Week Ending:
    • Aug. 21: 1.342 million gallons per day
    • Aug. 28: 1.367 million gallons per day
    • Sept. 4: 1.387 million gallons per day
    • Sept. 11: 1.452 million gallons per day
    • Sept. 18: 1.554 million gallons per day

The reservoir is about 47 inches below full. The minimum release for September and October is 1.0 cubic feet per second (449 gallons per minute, 0.646 million gallons per day), which is currently being exceeded by the controlled discharge, to maintain adequate flow in the Eno River. At the current water usage level, the town has approximately 210 days of water supply remaining. Average Hillsborough water use during the last four weeks is 1.440 million gallons per day, a 9.2 percent increase from the previous four-week period. Compared to the same four-week period in 2014, the town is using 13 percent more water.

The change in water level and days of supply remaining since mid-August (when the last report was distributed) is due to a significant increase in the controlled release and increased water use due to system flushing. Drought conditions in the area have increased from abnormally dry to a moderate drought level, which means there is less surface and ground water flow in the drainage basin to support the minimum required flow rate at the stream gauge in Hillsborough. As a result, the flow release had to be significantly increased in late August to compensate, at times as high as 6 cubic feet per second. The town's scheduled semiannual fire hydrant flushing began in early September, which increased daily water use. The rains this week are helping, and the forecast for this winter is wetter than normal. The water supply status is not a major concern at this time, but the town will continue to monitor levels and make adjustments as necessary.

Water customers are not currently subject to any use restrictions. The town is currently subject to Stage 1 water withdrawal restrictions, which limit withdrawal from the Eno River to 1.51 million gallons per day without any additional releases, due to low flow in the river.

Lake Orange is about 5 inches below full as of Sept. 23, and is releasing about 1 cubic feet per second.