Claremore Daily Progress

July 10, 2013

Low pressure drowning out RWD3 improvements

Salesha Wilken
Staff Reporter

CLAREMORE —

The July 4th holiday break has delayed implementation of new water lines in Rural Water District 3, creating water shortage again after two years of dealing with growing pains.
Residents on the top of Keetonville Hill near Owasso are frustrated once more as the summer déjà vu of water shortage returns.
“We have just completed the 12-inch pipeline installation along 96th  and 177th on July 3rd that will take care of the extra water usage/low pressure in the Keetonville area,” said RWD3 Director Ricky Stull.. 
The district used $4 million worth of pipelines in the construction, according to Stull.
Slightly delayed by 12 days of rain in April and May, the project was not completed until July 3.
“However, I was not able to put this line in service over the 4th because DEQ requires two consecutive samples that pass and like most they were on holiday break,” Stull said.
The homeowners have been dealing with reduced water pressure at times for approximately a week and tempers are rising with the thermometer.
“During the last water crises in 2011, didn’t Mr. Stull have something similar to say at that meeting about something that was going to make it all better and would be up and working shortly after the meeting,” said Robert Dorn, Keetonville Hill resident. “Déjà vu all over again.”
Dorn is skeptical after dealing with water shortages for two summers in a row.
Homeowners reported low pressure at 6 a.m. Tuesday — so slow that showers were not possible and toilets would not flush, according to Dorn.
 Stull reported low pressure via email correspondence to the residents and answered phone calls dealing with the issue.
He is trying to assure residents that the project improvements will be online soon and their concerns about future water usage can be put to rest.
The lines have been flushed and samples were sent for testing, according to Stull.
If these samples pass, this new line will be in service by this evening.
“We are almost 100 percent complete with the project,” Stull said. “The line on Keetonville is critical. It is the one I am worried about,” Stull said.
Pump repairs at stations in the area have also contributed to low pressure;  although Stull reports that RWD3 supplies water pressure to residents that currently exceeds state requirements.
“We are pumping as fast as we can,” Stull said.
The pipeline improvements and pump station upgrades are both part of the $4 million repair project.