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Auburn, Barrow initiate watering ban

AUBURN - Both Auburn and Barrow County initiated a total outdoor watering ban Friday as the Bear Creek Reservoir's water level lowered 5.15 feet.

Winder announced a total outdoor watering ban Thursday, calling this season's drought one of the worst in 50 years.

The Bear Creek Reservoir in Jackson County supplies most of Barrow County's water. Its 504-acre lake holds 4.8 billion gallons at full pool.

"The water level is a concern, but at this stage we are looking at all the drought indicators as far as river flows and soil moisture content," said Kevin Williams, Bear Creek Reservoir manager.

Because Barrow County sells water to the town of Braselton, Water Authority officials will ask Braselton officials to follow their lead in declaring a total outdoor watering ban, said Myron Garret, Barrow County's Water Authority director.

Bethlehem buys water from Winder and follows whatever restrictions Winder imposes, said Joyce Hogan, city clerk.

Statham produces its own water and restricts odd numbered addresses to outdoor watering on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays and even numbered addresses on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. All watering must take place between midnight and 10 a.m.