Maxwell: Sulphur Springs’ Water Towers Refilled Tuesday Morning
After a weekend of water being shut off more than once by the City Of Sulphur Springs, water has been restored to North Hopkins Water Supply Corporation customers. Those consuming water, however, are recommended to boil it because the pressure did fall below recommended amounts, according to NHWSC General Manager Edgar Clements.
Some Dike residents still have lower water pressure, because the tank there has yet to be filled, according to NHWSC Office Manager Lou Jane Drummond. Clements said NHWSC employees will continue checking today for any leaks or potential problems, but anticipates as soon as the water pressurizes service should soon return to normal — with the boil notice in place.
“We did not have any major breaks. We had two little spews and we fixed those small leaks yesterday,” Clements said Tuesday morning. “We are on top of things.”
Before 10 a.m. Feb. 23, Clements said NHWSC is addressing any issues that are found but, thus far, has had no line actually break completely in two. The biggest problems found required meters to be shut off. Many were shut off over the weekend and a number of additional service meter on customers’ properties were shutoff Monday due to issues there, he noted.
The NHWSC general manager reported one small leak was found in Mahoney. A water main discovered Monday evening on FM 2285 at FM 71 had a little bit of water that had begun going downhill. It spewed from a joint when they got in there. It was dug up and repaired Monday evening, according to Clements.
On Friday, NHWSC issued a boil water notice, noting that “Our usage demand at this time is great. If you are able to conserve/cut back your usage at all, it would benefit NHWSC customers. All of our equipment is working at this time but is having trouble keeping up with the high demand.”
Sulphur Springs City Manager Marc Maxwell cited a significant increase in water usage and low pressure in the NHWSC lines for shutting off the water supply to the district, and the city’s inability to fill their water towers for shutting off NHWSC’s water more than once over the weekend. Maxwell reported Sunday it would remain off except about 2 hours each morning until NHWSC could provide a plan for repairs for suspected major water leaks.
Sulphur Bluff and North Hopkins ISDs cancelled classes on Monday due to the water outage, but had resumed classes on Tuesday.
Both Clements and Maxwell addressed Hopkins County Commissioners Court regarding the issue Monday morning. Clements pointed out that NHWSC, even with increased use had had not exceeded the 1,500,000 gallons per day allowed in NHWSC’s contract with the City of Sulphur Springs. NHWSC and Sulphur Springs city officials then joined forces immediately after the court session Monday to discuss a plan for finding leaks along NHWSC’s system.
NHWSC’s water valves were turned back on at 10 a.m. Monday, Feb. 22, but officials anticipated it would take several hours until enough was pumped and re-pressurized to reach residents, and depending when the source. In an effort to get water directly to residents, NHWSC has the last few days bypassed filling up the tank in the Dike area. Residents have reported they haven’t had any water in days.
North Hopkins Water Supply Corporation, like the City of Sulphur Springs, offered a 1-million gallon reward to its customers who find a major water leak on their system. A major water leak is defined as a leak on a main line not a service lateral. Additionally, NHWSC is also offering a 100,000-gallon reward for customers who turn in a leak on a service lateral to a vacant building or vacant home. Both reward offers were for a 48-hour period which began at 10 a.m. Monday, Feb. 22. At that time, the officials asked that people who identify such a leak call it in to the Hopkins County Sheriff’s Office at 903-438-4040. The City of Sulphur Springs, Maxwell noted, will back up the Hopkins County Water Supply Corporation with the free water for those customers who identify leaks.
Emergency management officials Monday staged at the corner of FM 71 and State Highway 19, offering two cases of water per household to assist NHWSC until water service returned to normal.
Maxwell around 3:30 p.m. Monday reported the Sulphur Springs water towers were filled and holding water. Tuesday morning, Sulphur Springs’ water towers were reported to be full. Maxwell said NHWSC was using water at a rate of 720,000 gallons per day, which is a lot less than over the weekend.
Clements noted it does take more water to refill the water system after a shut off, but anticipates after filling the Dike tank and getting things back to normal soon, provided water continues to flow normally and pressurizes son. He asks that customers call in any leaks they may discover to the NHWSC office at 903-945-2619.
Due to reduced distribution system pressure, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality requires North Hopkins Water Supply Corporation to notify all customers to boil their water prior to consumption to ensure destruction of all harmful bacteria and other microbes. All water used for drinking, cooking, and ice making should be boiled and cooled prior to use.