Area water supply still

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 11, 2000

abundant despite drought


Managing Editor

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May 10, 2000 10 PM

A virtual complete lack of rain in the last weeks and the drought conditions that have hit Pike County have not resulted in concern from local officials about the water supply – at least not yet.

"We are not asking that our customers curb their usage," said Mike Davis, project manager for Troy Utilities. "We are able to meet the needs of the residents at this time without asking people to take measures to cut their usage."

Davis said the drought’s effects on the water supply have been felt, but have not been damaging at this point.

"Our tanks are holding up fine," he said. "That’s not to say that we aren’t frantically hoping for rain, but we are not experiencing problems as of yet."

Davis said the levels of water in the tanks are constantly dipping as pumps struggle to keep the tanks capped at a full supply of water.

"The tanks are dipping down some," he said. "The pumps can’t keep up with the usage, but we are holding up well now. The tanks have to dip a lot lower for us to ask people to make changes."

Davis said that in times of serious shortages, the city has asked people to go on an even-odd system of watering. This means residents who live at even street addresses would water on even numbered dates while residents at odd street addresses would water on odd dates.

"We have not implemented that system," Davis said.

Stephanie Blackmon, general manager of the Pike County Water Authority, said the county’s water supply is also holding up well.

"With the new wells we have installed, we have experienced no low pressure or other problems," Blackmon said. "We are not issuing odd-even watering."

Blackmon said May is not a peak month for water usage, which has contributed to the good fortune of the Water Authority.

"We are not in a peak month," she said. "That plays a large part in this. In July and August, this kind of thing could cause problems, but things are going well now."

Like Davis, Blackmon is hoping for rain, though, to offset potential future problems associated with drought.

"We could use a rain," she said. "That’s something we all need to see happen."

Both Blackmon and Davis feel that sensible handling of water will keep problems offset until, hopefully, a rain will alleviate their concerns.

But with five more sunny days in the forecast, the immediate future isn’t looking great, even though water supplies are holding up at the present time.

"Too much dry weather could serve to have an affect on our supply, but right now we’re OK," Davis said.