Port Angeles declares water shortage alert

The weather forecast calls for no significant rain in the near future, an official says.

PORT ANGELES — City residents are being asked to voluntarily reduce their water usage under a Stage 2 water shortage alert that city officials declared Tuesday.

Public Works and Utilities Director Craig Fulton cited low cubic-feet-per-second (cfs) flows on the Elwha River, the city municipal water source.

The weather forecast calls for no significant rain in the near future, he added.

The river’s flow, which should be at a median of 500 cfs for this time of year, is at 365 with a danger of dropped to 200.

“If it doesn’t rain, it could easily go down to 200,” Fulton said. “We want to be preparing our customers.”

Normally, autumn rains begin the first week in October.

“If that happens, everything is good,” Fulton said.

“There have been instances where the rains have not come until November.”

The Stage 2 water shortage declaration also was made to preserve fish spawning habitat, Fulton said.

Residents are being urged to reduce lawn watering to early morning or evening hours, to not wash their vehicles as frequently and to take shorter showers.

They also should repair dripping faucets and use automatic dishwashers and clothes washers only if they are full.

Residents also are urged to install low-flow showerheads and faucets and other water conservation devices that are available free at City Hall, 321 E. Fifth St.

Fire department personnel also will reduce their clearing of fire hydrants, and public works personnel will police the water system for leaks.

Further information on water conservation is available by calling 360-417-4715 or by going to

http://tinyurl.com/PDN-conserve.

________

Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at paul.gottlieb@peninsuladailynews.com.

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