Source: Unsplash

Pandemic rules are largely a thing of the past, but some Calgarians have found a new reason to snitch on their neighbours. 

Following a breach in one of the city’s water feed mains, the City of Calgary implemented level Stage 4 water restrictions, which bar residents from watering outside and filling hot tubs and pools. 

But nearly 2,000 Calgarians think their neighbours aren’t doing an adequate job of following the rules and have called the city bylaw office to complain. 

“Bylaw officers continue to take an education first approach to complaints under the outdoor water restrictions,” Coby Duerr, deputy chief of Calgary Emergency Management, said in a briefing Monday afternoon. 

Duerr said Calgary bylaw officials have received 1,976 calls since June 6, the day after the feed began leaking. Of those, 117 are pending investigation. Officers have issued 552 written warnings and 685 verbal warnings. Two violation tickets were issued to corporations. 

Calgarians can submit a suspected water misuse complaint to city bylaw online or by calling 311. The city says it is “encouraging” such reports.

Under stage 4 water restriction, Calgarians can’t wash outdoor surfaces such as buildings, sidewalks and driveways. They are also barred from filling fountains or other decorative water features, washing cars, or using water for construction purposes like dust control. 

The city is also recommending a number of indoor water saving measures such as using dishwashers and washing machines only with full loads, limiting showers to three minutes or less, turning off humidifiers and ice machines, and turning off the tap when brushing teeth or shaving. 

City officials said Monday that the Calgary Stampede will not be cancelled, but encouraged all tourists to take short showers and to take laundry home.

Calgary Mayor Jyoti Gondek has said the city doesn’t know why the feeder main began leaking. 

Initially, the city said the repairs would take about a week, but that estimate grew to three to five weeks after the city announced Friday that the main requires repairs in an additional five locations. 

In an emergency briefing Monday morning, Gondek said all the repairs are being done at the same time. She also said all necessary parts are either on the way or have already arrived in Calgary. 

The repairs are ongoing in the northwest Calgary neighbourhoods of Bowness and Montgomery.

The emergency is also impacting Airdrie, Strathmore and Chestermere.