Water Company Extends Voluntary Request for No Lawn Watering through Friday, August 5, 2011

High Water Usage for Lawn Irrigation Continues; Weather Forecast Includes Little Rain

INDIANAPOLIS – Indianapolis Water is extending its voluntary request for both residential and non-residential customers to stop watering lawns through Friday, August 5. The extension comes in the wake of forecasted temperatures remaining in the 90s, a continued lack of rain, and high water consumption.

Indianapolis Water issued its initial voluntary request 10 days ago and extended it last weekend; water consumption, mostly for lawn irrigation, has remained high and is stressing the underground infrastructure.

“We’re continuing to monitor water usage across the service territory and comparing it to the weather forecast,” said Matthew Klein, executive director of the Indianapolis Department of Waterworks, owner of Indianapolis Water. “With little or no rain in the forecast and temperatures remaining in the 90s, we continue to be concerned about the effects of excessive lawn-watering on the above- and below-ground infrastructure critical to the delivery of drinking water and fire protection.”

The request to voluntarily refrain from lawn watering is for all customers, including individual residential customers, apartment complexes, commercial parks, and industrial facilities.

”The National Weather Service indicates that we are in an abnormally dry period, which is no surprise,” Klein added. “We are seeing an increase in main failures. We need everybody to pitch in and help ensure our water system can keep up with the increased demand for drinking water during this period.”

Indianapolis Water will re-evaluate the voluntary request next Friday and make a determination about whether to extend or relax the request at that time.

On an average day, Indianapolis Water pumps 140 million gallons of clean, fresh drinking water. Consumption in the IW service territory has been at or above 200 million gallons per day almost every day since July 11.

The Department of Waterworks owns and manages Indianapolis Water, which serves nearly one million people in central Indiana, and contracts the system’s operation to Veolia Water Indianapolis.

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