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Mabton residents asked to conserve water

MABTON - Mabton residents are being asked to conserve water during the coming dog days of summer.

The community is experiencing a drop in water pressure in the city system, said Ildia Jackson, Mabton City administrator.

She said notices have gone out to city water customers to refrain from irrigating their lawns and gardens every day. Residents are being asked to restrict their use of water for such things as watering cars, she said.

"We are asking residents on the north side of town to water on even days of the week and south Mabton residents to water on odd days of the week," she said.

The city, which is in the process of seeking state and federal funds to drill a new city well, noticed a dramatic drop in water pressure last week, when the first hot spell hit the Valley.

"We have this happen every year when water demands increase," she explained.

Jackson said the city crews and engineers have tried several methods of elevating and maintaining the water pressure to no avail.

"We're not having a lack of water, it is just that our booster pumps can't work fast enough to replenish the system," Jackson said.

Mabton has seen a drop in the aquifer during the past several years, Jackson said. "Which is why we are petitioning the Water Conservancy Board of Yakima for permission to drill a new well," Jackson explained.

Mabton engineers will meet with the conservancy board today (Wednesday) to explain Mabton's need for a new well, which is expected to cost between $1.2 to $1.3 million to drill, and install, Jackson added.

She said the city was recently denied a state community block grant, which would have aided in funding the new well construction. "We plan to reapply for the state grant, as well as investigate other avenues of funding," she said.

Historically, Mabton water users have experienced noticeable drops in water pressure every summer when demands on the aging water system increase as residents use more city water for outdoor uses.

"This year in order to handle the pressure drop, city water crews are turning off the system between the hours of midnight and 3 a.m. in order to allow the reservoirs to recycle," she explained.

"We should see a slight increase in the water pressure as a result of that action," she added.

"We just ask that residents be patient and help us with our conservation efforts until fall, when the system should return to normal," she added.

. Julia Hart can be contacted at

(509) 837-4500, or you can e-mail her at jhart@eaglenewspapers.com

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