Washington utility customers who have not had their water meter switched over may soon be without water, as the city tries it’s final attempts to contact residents who have not scheduled their appointments.

Letters, in batches of about 50, are being sent out to about 300 residents who have not updated their meter notifying them that meters soon will be shut off if contact is not made.

The letter cites a section of the city code that reads “. . . it shall be the duty of the water consumers to allow the superintendent access to their valves and meters at reasonable times and intervals; and for refusal to allow such access,  upon order of the city, the water supply may be cut off and withheld from any person so refusing.”  

It further states that any further delays may result in a disruption of water service until the meter can be updated.

On average, the city and Pedal Valve, Inc. (PVI), have tried to contact residents with at least two phone calls, two door hangers and knocking on the door, said Kevin Quaethem, water/wastewater superintendent.

There are roughly 400 meters that still need to be installed, Quaethem said.

“I would really hope everyone would heed to the letter and respond to it,” Quaethem said. “We have tried everything we can to make contact and held off as long as we could. Unfortunately, we’ve gotten to that point (of having to discontinue service).”

Quaethem noted that PVI crews are working later than normal to accommodate customers’ schedules.

“We’re trying to be as nice as we can,” he said.

The project is about 92 percent complete, Quaethem said. In total, there were about 6,700 meters that needed to be updated.

“As a whole it has gone really well,” he said. “Residents have been cooperative and we appreciate it.”

Quaethem urged residents who may have friends or family who haven’t switched their meters to encourage them to do so.

“The last thing we want to do is disconnect their service. That is not our goal,” he said.

Quaethem said the meters are a “new age system” and have been working really well.

“It’s all about water conservation. The more people can see they’re using, the more they may conserve on water,” he said, adding that there is an ongoing drought and water conservation is important.

The city contracted with Siemens Building Technologies and PVI to install the new residential and commercial iPERL water meters throughout town this year.

PVI was pulled from the job in October because of an inventory ordering issue but remobilized the last week of November.

Those who have not had their meters switched over should call Pedal Valve,  636-221-9074 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to schedule an appointment.  

There is no charge for the service.