Officials appeal for thrifty water use in Washington County

August 24, 2002|by LAURA ERNDE

Washington County water customers are still being asked to use water frugally in the face of the drought, said Bill Dean, superintendent of water and wastewater operations.

Since Feb. 19, the county's 8,000 water customers have been asked to conserve, he said.

Among the suggested restrictions are avoiding washing cars and hosing down driveways or vinyl siding; avoiding watering lawns, gardens, shrubs or flowers; running dishwashers and laundry machines only with full loads; and repairing any leaky faucets or toilets.

Water use is down about 5 percent, Dean said.

For the most part, the water supply - derived mostly from wells and springs - remains steady at the county's wells and springs. Water levels are monitored weekly, Dean said.


The city of Hagerstown, which gets its water from the Potomac River, is on the verge of asking the 75,000 people it serves to voluntarily conserve, said Water Department Manager Gene Walzl.

River levels have been low, but sufficient to cover the increasing demand the city has seen in the past few weeks. Water use has been running 11 million to 12 million gallons a day, which is higher than normal but not unusual for this time of year, Walzl said.

Hagerstown supplies water to surrounding communities including Funkstown, Smithsburg and Williamsport.

"I can't stress enough that people have to be aware that it isn't an unlimited supply. We don't want to restrict it, but we also don't want to waste it," Walzl said.

The Herald-Mail Articles