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Pennsylvania American Water is requesting customers reduce water consumption after the state Department of Environmental Protection added Cumberland County to its drought watch declaration.

DEP Tuesday added Cumberland County and three other counties to the drought watch, which expands the list to 34 counties in the state. The drought watch was announced in early August due to below-normal rainfall, low stream flows and declining groundwater levels.

Other counties in the Midstate also on the list are Perry, Dauphin and Lebanon counties.

According to the DEP, the drought watch declaration is the first and least severe level of the state’s three drought classifications.

Given the addition, Pennsylvania American Water is looking for customers to voluntarily conserve water.

“We want to reinforce DEP’s request that homeowners and businesses do what they can to voluntarily reduce water consumption during this drought watch,” said Christopher Abruzzo, director of Water Quality and Environmental Compliance for Pennsylvania American Water. “Currently, our sources are at adequate levels and we are carefully monitoring our supplies. We are asking our customers to do their part now so we don’t face more severe conditions later this summer and into the fall.”

The company offered a number of tips on how residents can conserve water:

Install water-saving showerheads and faucet aerators

Shorten showers to seven to 10 minutes

Turn off the water while brushing teeth

Run only full loads in the dishwasher, and adjust washing machine water levels to match load size

Rinse produce in a basin rather than under running water

Keep water in the refrigerator to avoid running water from a faucet until it is cold

Check toilets for leaks.


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