A regional shortage of liquid oxygen linked to the surge of COVID-19 inpatient treatments is impacting Orlando Utilities Commission’s treated water supplies.To reduce demand for liquid oxygen, OUC is asking water customers to immediately limit irrigating their lawns and landscapes. If OUC’s liquid oxygen supplies continue to be depleted and water usage isn’t reduced, water quality may be impacted. But, we believe that will not happen if everyone does their part to conserve water.
Suspending lawn/landscaping irrigation, which accounts for 40% of water use in Central Florida, is the most critical way to reduce water consumption. A typical summer month in Orlando records more than 6 inches of rain, which is enough to meet the 1- to 1.5 inches per week of water a yard needs.
Why is there a shortage of liquid oxygen currently?
Several factors have contributed to the current supply shortage. In addition to COVID-19 cases surging locally, health systems have been increasingly prescribing a treatment that relies on liquid oxygen more frequently. While this combination has created a challenge for OUC to solve in terms of the supply shortage, we fully support vendors diverting liquid oxygen to the health systems in Central Florida as a life-saving measure.