Moyie Springs issues emergency water conservation notice

It’s been two months and six days since a Moyie Springs water main breach March 24 took down the city’s water and the speed at which the water system was placed back in service may explain the level of shock expressed since city water bills arrived this week accompanied by an emergency notification that the city has no water and requesting strict water conservation measures immediately — no watering gardens or lawns, no washing washing cars, no pools or hut tubs.

March 24 was a Sunday and city utilities supervisor John Nelson was in action immediately. Recognizing the scope of the breach, he realized that permanent repairs could take days, leaving 433 households and several commercial accounts dry, he contacted Three Mile Water system operators and managers, and without hesitation diverted their water to the city’s system so quickly few on the system knew how devastating the failure had been.

Every drop of water that’s flowed through the faucets on the Moyie water system for the past two months and six days has been water graciously shared by Three Mile water system and paid for by the City of Moyie Springs.

Since not long after the breach, Moyie Springs City Clerk Donna Wilson Funkhouser has said “any day now” whenever asked when repairs will be made. Early on John and his crew had the new water main built and ready to go in, a job the estimate can be completed in three days. But the administrative processes; easements, mapping, surveying, permits, engineering and more, have delayed the process.

“I’m hoping the crews are doing actual work within the week,” Donna said. “Of course, I’ve been saying that for awhile. But this time I’m optimistic.”

On behalf of the mayor and city council, Donna thanks those of Three Mile Water and the city personnel who responded to the crisis so well, and the city residents who conserve water until the system is restored.

“We’re all in this together,” Donna said.

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