"We are in a cat 2 drought, which is described as a severe drought," explained Raleigh environmental coordinator Ed Buchan.
The drought also has Raleigh leaders reminding residents of permanent water conservation measures in place - including alternate day irrigation schedules.
Downtown businesses like The Oxford restaurant are heeding the warnings.
"As restaurants, we do consume a lot of water per foot - more than even most residents do. We have a responsibility to participate in water conservation efforts," offered James Park, Director of Operations with Eschelon Hospitality - The Oxford's parent company.
Park said his restaurants make sure dishwashers are full before they're run, and other conservation efforts.
While stricter mandatory restrictions could be put in place - as has happened in recent years - city officials say they're not worried it'll come to that just yet.
"A lot of our modeling shows we are going to recover by April, which is something we hope for, and we do now have additional water supply resource with Lake Benson and Lake Wheeler, so we have a little more flexibility than we did in years past" said Buchan. "We're watching it cautiously. We're not in a panic mode by any means."
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