Water demand characteristics of shared water and sanitation facilities: Experiences from community ablution blocks in eThekwini Municipality, South Africa
The provision of communal water and sanitation facilities has been mandated by the South African Government as an interim measure for informal settlement upgrading. These services form the first step in the upgrading process and are essential in meeting the basic needs of the community. The eThekwini municipality is rolling out community ablution blocks to informal settlements throughout their jurisdiction. This paper investigates the water demand characteristics of these community ablution blocks, and provides a detailed methodology for collecting the data, which provides the 15-minute peak and average water demand. The results from January to November 2012 indicate that the majority of the water supply (60%) is used for laundry purposes, which includes the water used in the laundry basins and from the tap for off-site consumption, while the water demand for toilet flushing accounts for 16% of the total water supply from each facility. The peak and average water demand can be used for future hydraulic modelling of these, and other, communal ablution facilities.
Keywords: informal settlements; communal sanitation; hydraulic modelling