Myersville, Md., enacts outdoor water use ban

June 26, 1997


Staff Writer

Myersville, Md., on Tuesday became the third Tri-State town to issue a water ban on outdoor use.

A particularly dry summer has lowered the water level of Little Catoctin Creek, the town's main water source.

"This is a precautionary measure to keep enough water for the whole summer," said Myersville Mayor Billy Eckstine.

In addition to the creek, area mountain springs and two town wells feed the main water plant. It would take a rainfall of about 1 1/2 to 2 inches within a three-day period to adequately raise water levels, Eckstine said.

As in Boonsboro and Smithsburg, where similar water bans are in effect, Myersville residents are prohibited from any outdoor use of water, including washing cars, watering lawns and gardens and filling pools.


For the third day, Boonsboro had to haul about 100,000 gallons of water from Hagerstown's water plant to dump in its own depleting reservoir on Wednesday.

"It isn't a major dent" in the 11.8 million gallons of water that Hagerstown water plant employees draw from the Potomac River each day, said Hagerstown Water Department Engineer Dave Shindle.

He said Hagerstown's water supply is adequate and no problems are anticipated.

Boonsboro water and sewer system officials on Tuesday asked the town laundromat and car wash to shut down until water levels were sufficient.

"It's devastating. ... We don't have any income coming in without water," said Mark Fulton, vice president of retail operations for AC&T, which runs the only car wash in Boonsboro.

He said the town assured him the establishment would not be closed any "longer than absolutely necessary," but could not give him an exact date.

No other Tri-State area communities are expected to take similar measures during this summer, officials said.

"We're not close to instituting a ban at all," said Daniel Seal, water quality chemist for Frederick City's Water Quality Department.

With three water sources - the Linganore Creek, Fishing Creek Reservoir and Monocacy River - to compensate for this year's dry summer, Seal said the city's water plant has not reached a point where a water ban is necessary.

In addition, officials in neither Berkeley Springs, W.Va., nor Martinsburg, W.Va., expect water levels to drop enough to enforce a ban, officials said.

Even the nearly 11,000 Washington County wells that specifically serve households have remained safe from the hot, dry weather, said David Barnhart, sanitarian for the county Health Department.

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