Theft and vandalism at aquifer drilling sites and of general water infrastructure in Cape Town is compromising water security, the City said on Sunday.
"The City of Cape Town has been informed that theft from aquifer drilling sites is making it difficult for contractors to bring more water online timeously," said Xanthea Limberg, mayoral committee member for informal settlements, water and waste services and energy, in a statement.
She lamented the interference at these sites which were involved in "crucial work", explaining that delays of "weeks at a time" were caused by such thefts.
"Furthermore, theft of other City infrastructure often results in water running to waste," she added.
"It is not possible to reliably say how much water has been lost, but in this time of scarcity any water lost due to theft and vandalism is too much," said Limberg.
Tools, batteries, vehicles and any materials which could be perceived to have scrap value are being targeted.
Since July 2017 more than R5m worth of hydrants, meters and valves have been stolen or damaged, she said.
An appeal was made for anyone with information about these crimes to report it.