FLINT, Mich. — The city of Flint announced that an additional backup water storage system is scheduled to begin operating later this year due to a recent drop in water supply.
On March 11, city officials asked residents to conserve water for five days after “recent extreme temperatures” caused water mains to rupture. In a release, the city said the outages affected storage supplies to Cedar Reservoir and water towers.
“Extreme weather changes often stress a city’s groundwater pipes, causing them to expand and contract to the point of bursting,” the release said. “When pipes rupture, water usage tends to increase, resulting in a reduction in the city’s storage supply.”
According to the release, Flint’s average daily water consumption increased by about 1 million gallons following a water main outage earlier this year. The city used to use about “9.6 to 10 million” gallons of water per day, but now averages more than 11 million gallons per day.
As water usage has increased, the reservoir’s water supply has nearly halved, from 18 million gallons to 10 million gallons. The city likes to keep the reservoir between 18 and 20 million gallons, the release said.
On March 17, the city thanked residents for taking steps such as “no water running when you brush your teeth” to help conserve water and restore water levels to normal.
“Thanks to the combined efforts of residents and business owners, the City is pleased to announce that its backup water storage supply has returned to normal operating levels,” the release said.
To prevent these problems in the future, the city is working to provide an additional backup water storage system and build the Dort Reservoir and Pumping Station, which will begin operating in late 2022.
“The new backup system, along with the Cedar Reservoir and Pumping Station and Elevated Water Tower, will better ensure continued water supply to residents and businesses in the event of future emergencies,” the release said.
For water emergencies, questions or concerns, please call (810) 766-7202 [water] and (810) 766-7079 [sewer]. 24/7 monitoring of these lines. For non-urgent questions or concerns, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.