Dry conditions are worsening in the Tasman district, as the El Nino weather pattern takes a hold.
There has been little rain since the start of spring, and the Waimea River is falling.
District council environment and planning manager Dennis Bush-King told Morning Report they only had about 70 percent of normal rainfall, and soil moisture levels are about 20 percent lower than at the same time last year
Mr Bush-King said the council was looking at water restrictions soon, with the first step a 20 percent cut in people's permitted allocations
He said it was the earliest the dry-weather taskforce had ever met, and things could get serious if there was no rain soon.