You are not permitted to download, save or email this image. Visit image gallery to purchase the image.
The Clutha District Council has asked water users from Lovells Flat to Waihola, including Berwick and Tokoiti, to urgently reduce their water use to avoid widespread outages in the near future.
The council said the water supply for the North Bruce Rural Water Scheme was running critically low and a suspected major leak somewhere in the scheme was compounding issues.
Any unnecessary water use by those on the scheme - such as watering gardens and cleaning cars - is prohibited until further notice.
Farmers were also urged to check on-farm supplies for any leaks and turn off any systems that were not critical.
The council was working to locate the leak.
Anyone with information on the leak should contact the council urgently, on 0800 801-350, or the Milton Service Centre on 03 417-8109, a spokesman said.