Rifle water restrictions take affect due to high demand on treatment plant
As of Monday, July 8, Rifle residents and businesses were asked to follow an odd-even yard watering schedule and to only water between the hours of 6 p.m. and 10 a.m.
The restrictions were needed due to high demand on the city’s water treatment plant and were to remain in effect through Sept. 30 or until further notice. Under an odd/even watering schedule, properties with even addresses water on calendar days that are even. Properties with odd addresses water on calendar days that are odd.
Recent hot temperatures have nearly doubled demand on the city’s Graham Mesa water plant. It was producing around 2 million gallons per day, but reached a daily average of 3.2 million gallons a day, with several days at 3.6 million gallons. The plant’s maximum finished water output is 3.75 million gallons a day.
City officials said when the plant reaches those demand levels, restrictions are needed to ensure: 1) the city maintains storage capacity while trouble shooting problems that could occur with plant and distribution infrastructure (major line breaks, pump failure, etc.); 2) maintain storage for fire protection; and 3) reduce stress placed on the aged infrastructure at the Graham Mesa plant.
To alleviate concerns from some property owners on even watering days concerned about “getting cheated” when there are 31 days in the month, because there are two odd days in a row, any 31st day of the month will be a “wild card” day, when both odd and even addresses can water. However, residents and businesses are asked to apply only 50 percent of the irrigation water on those “wild card” days as a normal watering day.
Citizens may view certain properties watering daily. There are properties in Rifle city limits that use raw irrigation water. Those properties are not included in the water restrictions. The cemetery, as an example, uses raw water, as do several city parks and other public amenities.
Anyone with questions can contact city Utility Director Dick Deussen at 665-6557.
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