City officials in Warrenton and Truesdale say water usage has declined this past week, but mandatory conservation measures will remain in place.
The mayors from both Warrenton and Truesdale signed proclamations instituting the mandatory measures last Thursday, July 5.
Two days earlier, officials asked residents in both cities to reduce water usage on a voluntary basis. But officials determined further steps were needed to ensure enough water was available for essential needs.
Some of the actions that are prohibited include watering lawns, washing vehicles, machinery or other equipment or outdoor surfaces, and filling swimming pools.
Warrenton Mayor Jerry Dyer said the city pool will remain closed as long as the mandatory measures are in place, as well as the coin-operated bulk water station on Ashland Avenue. The city also is no longer operating the booster station located in the south end of town, which will reduce the water pressure for some areas.
Commercial car washes, such as those at local gas stations, also have been closed.
The mandatory measures were deemed necessary due to declining levels in the water table.
Elsewhere in the county, voluntary water conservation measures remain in place for Wright City. No conservation measures have to be taken in Marthasville.
“This is a tough decision,” Dyer said. “You don’t foresee things like this happening. We need to do whatever we can to preserve our water.”
Warrenton aldermen Tuesday night approved a well replacement project during an emergency meeting. Officials agreed to contract with Flynn Drilling Company, Troy, and spend $87,472 to have the pump replaced at Well No. 6, which is located next to Chic Lumber near Veterans Memorial Parkway, Dyer said.
As part of the project, Dyer said the pump will be lowered more than 100 feet deeper into the well so that it can be operated more effectively. Without the well in service, the only water for the south end of the city is being pumped from another well on Ashland Avenue. That well has been running continuously to meet the demand.
Dyer anticipates the new pump to be installed and the project completed by the middle of next week.
“The rest of the wells are working overtime,” he said. “The water table for (Well No.) 6, we couldn’t get that to recover where it was safe to run that pump all the time.”
The mandatory measures have made an impact. Dyer noted that from Sunday to Monday the amount of water used in the city dropped by around 300,000 gallons.
Truesdale City Clerk Mary Lou Rainwater said that city officials there have seen a decrease in water usage in the past week.
“People are being respectful, being good about following” the mandatory measures, Rainwater said. “That is helping everyone.”
A positive outlook is appearing in the forecast. The record-breaking temperatures from last week have been replaced by more desirable temps in the low 90s and a small chance of rain is in the forecast for every day through the next week.