With the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management’s (ODPEM) forecast of drought to grip the island over the next three months, Director Ronald Jackson has urged Jamaicans to start conserving water.
“Typically, every January we are faced with the beginning of a dry spell in our country, which is usually what we call the primary dry period. We are asking the public that even before the Met Office (Meteorological Service) declares a drought that they begin to practise certain mitigation measures and also preparedness measures, well in advance of such a declaration, because we are trying to promote a culture of prevention and readiness,” said Jackson.
Increased incidence of drought and lengthy seasons of water scarcity have seen Jamaicans investing in more permanent water storage systems for their homes and businesses. Water systems, from tanks to pumps have gained popularity because of their convenience, affordability as well as capacity range. However, how can consumers determine the best water system to purchase for their homes or businesses?
What is included in a water system?
Typically a complete water system will include a water storage tank; a pump to transfer the water from the storage unit to the tap and a pressure tank to maintain a consistent flow of water to the tap.
How much water do you need to store?
When buying a tank, the first things you should determine are how much water you need and your intended use for the stored water i.e. domestic, agricultural. “When purchasing tanks, you must first assess how much water you need to store to cover your needs” said Locksley Waller, Technical Operations Manager at Appliance Traders Limited, Jamaica’s chief retailer of domestic and special order tanks. “The average person uses up to 80-100 gallons of water per day including flushing the toilet, showering, hand-washing and cooking so you have to calculate tank capacity on a per person basis. If for instance there are four people in your household, you would need to store 400 gallons of water per day. If the tank is to be used for agricultural purposes, the same rule applies whereas you would have to determine the volume of water needed for crops, livestock and store accordingly,” he said.
What are the different kinds of tanks and where will you store it?
“Tanks come in a variety of sizes and materials including plastic (polyethylene, polypropylene), fiberglass, concrete, stone and steel, with the most common domestic option being plastic ” explains Waller. The intended location of the tank (indoors, outdoors, above ground or underground) also play a big part in its colour and construction characteristics.
Will I need any additional equipment to get my system going?
In addition to the tank, ATL’s Waller also recommends completing your system with a pressure tank and electrical pump to ensure consistent flow. “Pumps such as DAB will help to transfer the water from the tank towards the taps whereas pressure tanks will help to maintain a steady ‘pressurized’ flow while reducing the number of starts the pump makes, conserving energy in the process. The size of the pump and pressure tank that will be required is dependent on the number of persons in the household and also the height to which the water has to be pumped
Will the pump affect my electricity bill?
The more frequently your pump starts is the more power it will consume. A larger pump will also generally consume more electricity, “ATL carries the ‘Active Driver’ – an inverter energy saving controller that will allow your pump to run only at the speed necessary to satisfy your flow requirement. This device allows your system to operate at a constant pressure regardless of the flow demand by varying the speed of the pump motor to match the demand. This user friendly interface enhances comfort, runs silently, eliminates over pressurization, extends pump life, allows trouble free installations and is compatible with a large range of pump types” said Waller.
How long can water be stored?
If stored properly, water can be saved for approximately 24 months providing the tank remains airtight. By design a water tank/container should do no harm to the water said Waller. Water is susceptible to a number of ambient negative influences, including bacteria, viruses, algae, changes in pH, and accumulation of minerals, accumulated gas. A correctly designed water tank works to address and mitigate these negative effects.
Drought is one of the most costly natural disasters and accounted for over 30 per cent crop loss in Trelawny last April and so in addition to storing water in tanks, Waller also recommends having gallon bottles stored. “There is no such thing as saving too much water in preparation for a steely drought season so persons should also ensure they have gallon bottles on hand. Allocate one gallon of water per person per day. That means if you have three people in your family, you should allocate three gallons per day.”
Basic Pump (DAB 0 .6 HP) and Tank (400 gallon) are available at ATL starting at $39,000. www.atljamaica.com.
It’s the beginning of a new week, and Danila Haddon is up early.
She muses on her day ahead – mentally plotting her rounds and routes – checks in on her orchids and makes her way to her office in Ocho Rios, St Ann.
Before she downs her first, full cup of coffee, she has already pursued sales leads, dispatched technicians, checked in with the service team, visited a job site as well as ordered new stock for her showroom and warehouse.
Nine months into her role as branch manager for Appliance Traders Limited (ATL) Ocho Rios, Haddon has blazed an impressive trail in a field most would expect to be headed by a man. “It is truly a technical business and much more than televisions, irons or air conditioners.
From installing generators that power hospitals to designing and outfitting commercial laundry room solutions – we do it all,” Haddon is proud of her job.
“Not many people would believe that a woman could hold her own selling Italian DAB water pump systems; know the ins-and-outs of generators or speak to hotel engineering teams on their industrial system requirements. But that’s just it, I am a woman – I can master anything,” she said with pride.
And mastered them she has. As the first female to head a regional branch for ATL, she notes that she had no reservations about being ‘man enough’ for the job. “Prior to this (assignment) I worked for almost a decade in the hospitality industry, which thrives on three things – expectations, execution and energy. I’ve taken that approach to my new role and being a new industry for me, I was willing to learn and wasn’t daunted to step up to the plate.”
Since her appointment, Haddon has bolstered sales for the branch, reporting a marked 25 per cent increase in transactions as well as a surge of in-store traffic. “The first thing I did when I took the job was to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of our current team then we made some fundamental changes,” she stated. “We came together as a unit, reassessed our customers – their needs and requirements, addressed our challenges, set new personal targets then overshot them.”
Haddon and her team have also made impressive strides in the St Ann community partnering most recently with the St Ann’s Bay Hospital to fund a new Electrocardiogram (ECG) printer for its department of internal medicine.
She revealed that her developing platform includes a lot more community work as well as plans to fortify her team with training and development. “There is a lot of potential within our group and I think that the desire to be the best at what we do is ingrained in us.” And the team’s respect for the pint-sized dynamo is mutual. They describe her as “tough but fair, with an open door and a ready solution.
“With a cohesive team in play, you can always expect excellence and that is my strategy,” she notes.
Danila Haddon has no reservations about stepping into a man’s world.
Responding to the public outcry in Westmoreland of water woes, Appliance Traders Limited’s (ATL) Assistant Deputy Chairman Ian Neita has replied in tow, pledging ATL’s support to remedy the parish’s acute water shortage. “In light of the severe drought affecting residential and commercial areas in Westmoreland, ATL will be donating a water pump and storage system to assist those affected by low water pressure” Mr. Neita said.
ATL’s initiative has garnered support from Mayor of Savanna-la-Mar, Bertel Moore who immediately rallied his team to scout a location for the system, “The Mayor was right on point with us and immediately identified a central area in Westmoreland he felt would best serve the affected communities” Neita added.
In the week ahead, ATL will be installing an Italian DAB pump system, a 20 gallon pressure tank as well as a 400 gallon storage water tank at the Risen Messiah Early Childhood Institution in Good Hope, Westmoreland. “With this system, we’re hoping to ease the burden of some the affected persons and call on the NWC to maintain this resource until the piped water system is restored” said Neita.
ATL boasts a myriad of water system solution services including tanks, pressure systems as well as inverter active driver pumps which save up to 40% on energy bills.
Appliance Traders Limited (ATL), one of Jamaica’s top electronics and industrial retailer, has announced 30 days of General Consumption Tax (GCT)-free shopping on selected items throughout the month of June.
The move comes as ATL responds to the government’s revenue measures for fiscal year 2012-2013 which see GCT being imposed across several sectors.
“With rising concerns about the new GCT regulations and how it will impact living and energy costs, consumers are on the aggressive hunt for value and relief so ATL is offering GCT rollback on some of our products,” a release quoted Assistant Deputy Chairman of ATL, Ian Neita as saying.
The move is aimed at offering some relief to consumers at this time.
“In addition to the GCT rollback specials, ATL also offers a range of energy efficient products including our Inverter lines which saves up to 60 per cent on energy costs,” Neita said.
The GCT rollback campaign is being instituted at all four branches of ATL in Kingston, Ocho Rios and Montego Bay starting tomorrow, June 1.
It will incorporate deals across most product categories including premium brands such as Panasonic, Whirlpool, Prizm, Hoshizaki and DAB.