Shanghai city’s government recently made an announcement to calm the big wave of water panic buying amid the rumor of water shortages in the city of 26 million people.

“Tap water production and supply are normal, and water quality standards have been reached,” said the Shanghai government.

The rumors arose after a record drought dried up parts of the Yangtze River, causing saltwater to intrusions into the estuary and depleted reservoirs feeding Shanghai clean water. 

According to Caixin, on October 11, Shanghai authorities had to take immediate action of suspending the water supply after the intrusions contaminated two of the city’s four main water reservoirs.

The city government also announced a routine maintenance schedule for some of the city’s water pipes, making residents even more confused, rushing to stockpile bottled water.

Shanghai authorities then had to issue a notice to reassure people, saying that the problem of saltwater had occurred since early September but also confirmed that the supply of clean water was being closely monitored and under control.

However, the people of Shanghai are not so convinced. Photos circulating on social media show many people flocking to supermarkets to buy large quantities of water bottles.

Growing fears of more COVID lockdowns worsen the situation. Especially as Shanghai residents went through the first lockdown earlier this year with shortages of food and essential goods.

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