Sanders announces winter irrigation restrictions

Changes to restrictions on when and and how often San Diego residents can water their lawns and landscaping will go into effect Sunday, Mayor Jerry Sanders announced Thursday.

Sprinklers can only run seven minutes at a time, down from 10 minutes, and residents can only water their lawns before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m., down from 6 p.m., according to Sanders.

San Diego residents will still only be allowed to water their lawns and landscaping three days a week.

Homes with odd-numbered addresses will be permitted to water on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. For homes with even-numbered addresses, watering is allowed on Saturday, Monday and Wednesday.

Apartments, condominiums and businesses can water only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

The regulations are outlined in a 15-second No Time To Waste -- No Water To Waste’’ public service announcement to begin airing locally.

According to Sanders, San Diego residents have reduced their overall water usage by about 13 percent since mandatory restrictions were enacted in


“In the five months since the city began mandatory water restrictions, the citizens of San Diego have done a remarkable job of changing their everyday habits to minimize their water use,” he said. :Now all of us will need to do even better.”

Since the restrictions took effect, the city has contacted about 3,000 scofflaws, but given only five warning citations and no fines, according to the mayor.

Sanders said the restrictions will likely be in place into the foreseeable future.

“Certainly, if we got adequate rainfall over the next several years we would obviously ease up on these,” he said. “But, I can’t foresee a time in the very near future where we will lift all restrictions.”

San Diego’s water supplies are threatened by years of drought which, combined with restrictions on the amount of water that can be pumped from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, has led to shortages in Southern California.

Sanders urged the adoption of state legislation to create infrastructure that would improve California’s water supply.

“The time for the Legislature to act is now,” Sanders said. “I know Sacramento is close to a deal. For the sake of all Californians, we urge you to put this legislation into effect.”