Water Ministry ready for challenges from rainfall, low temperatures

Street sweepers in Amman push rainwater down a street drain in Amman after heavy rains dropped on Monday, December 20, 2021. (Photo: Ameer Khalifeh/Jordan News)
AMMAN – The rainy season is finally here, bringing the Kingdom much-needed water, but with it, also often problems.اضافة اعلان

Clogged sewerage and flooded tunnels are regular occurrences in winter, but this year, the Ministry of Water and Irrigation was quoted, on Monday, by a local media outlet as saying that it is mobilizing all its relevant cadres and departments to prepare for any challenges that may arise from the rain, and the drop in temperature forecast for the Kingdom, assuring that it will respond to any complaints and issues 24 hours a day.

The ministry's operation centers are fully functional and actively coordinating with local water companies and administrations on the latest needs of the Kingdom's governorates and municipalities, it said.

Director-General of the Yarmouk Water Company (YWC)Muntaser Momani told Jordan News that Jordanian homeowners need to be warned about a frequent errors some commit during rainfall periods, which is that they "connect their house rain gutters to a nearby wastewater and sewerage network, which leads to overflow that can cause damage to the pipes."

"Our wastewater network is designed specifically for the purpose of carrying wastewater from Jordanian houses. The volume of water it can carry is quite limited, and if not handled properly, it can lead to some flooding," he said.

A company fully owned by the Water Authority of Jordan, YWC's expertise does not necessarily involve solving the issue of flooding, a duty reserved for Jordan's municipalities, said Momani. YWC's main duties are to ensure the efficient distribution of water to citizens and address their concerns relating to water services, as well purifying wastewater in the Kingdom's northern governorates.

 He also said that Jordan should work to benefit from rainwater by increasing the amount of collection reservoirs throughout the Kingdom. This "will reduce the volume of water wasted" and reduce the high demand for water distributed by YWC.

By way of advice for the rainy season, Momani said that in order to prevent the malfunctioning of water meters when temperatures drop considerably, and to prevent the bursting of water pipes at homes, citizens are advised "to insulate their pipes with rock-based mineral wool, which also prevents waters from freezing".

If temperatures drop in the Kingdom, as forecast, the ministry will not face any major shortage of required resources or machinery needed to tackle possible problems, ministry spokesperson Omar Salameh told Jordan News.
"We are prepared for any occurrence, be they challenges from rain or from snow," he assured.

Salameh also said that Jordan's precipitation level last season was "weak, as only 50 to 60 percent of the dams' capacity was filled during that time period. We have dams that can collect up to 360 million cubic meters, in addition to having artificially constructed water catchment basins that can collect about 111 million cubic meters of water."

The Kingdom is aiming for higher numbers this season.

"The ministry is preparing emergency response teams who will be equipped and prepared to deal with any issues resulting from the weather in many areas, like the Jordan Valley, in case any problems occur with their irrigation and wastewater networks. Farmers are advised to protect their crops from any damage that may arise from temperature drops, by covering their crops in the manner recommended by the Ministry of Agriculture," Salameh added.

The Ministry is also taking measures to prevent citizens from approaching water facilities and dams during this time of low temperatures and rainfall, in order to prevent the disruption of work carried out on these dams, and also to prevent loss of life resulting from drowning, he said.

Read more National news