Water flowing but boil water notice continues

“This leak is not as easy to fix" - Vanessa West, MWD Board Member

Jan. 10, 2023 —  The Mapleton Water District (MWD) continues to fight to get clean water flowing through the lines of its 260 customers.

On Jan. 4, a major step was taken towards that goal when a large leak was found and repaired near Stagecoach Road. The leak was estimated to be losing approximately 80,000 gallons of water a day. This repair was big a step in the right direction. As of press deadlines Monday, all customers had running water, though delivering consistent clean water is still a work in progress.

“We did find a new leak — much smaller (20,000 gallons) than the bigger leak (80,000 gallons) that was fixed last week,” said Vanessa West, MWD Board Member. “This leak is not as easy to fix; it is in a valve. So, we will need to hire outside help to fix it.”

According to Millie Rochon, MWD Board Vice-chair, outside help is on the way.

“Civil West Engineering [of Coos Bay] is coming tomorrow [Jan. 9] to inspect the water system and that [new] leak,” said Rochon. “We are still on a boil notice and will be for some time. We will wait to see how problematic the feedback from Civil West Engineers is.”

A boil water notice means that before ingesting water, customers should boil it for at least one minute.

Bottled drinking water is available for free for those in need. Call the MWD office at (541-268-4348 for delivery.

In a statement sent out to the district, the Mapleton School District explained that as long as a boil water notice is in effect, the school district will provide bottled water and coolers during the school day but ask that students arrive with full water bottles.

“A great ‘thank you’ to the water district staff and board and the many volunteers from Mapleton and the county who helped us get to normal soon,” said MSD Superintendent Sue Wilson.

In other water district business, last week the MWD’s computer was damaged. According to district administrator Kelsie Allen, she was able to get bills out but some customers may receive duplicates.

“I received a text yesterday from Mariah at the post office just giving me a heads up that there were a few people that would be getting more than one bill,” Allen said in a post on Facebook. “Yes, it's just a duplicate. No, you don't have to pay both. Please don't call the office about this. Just throw it away.”

MWD expects its new treatment plant to arrive in March. In the meantime, it will continue to look for resources to keep its temporary system creating water.

“The Water District continues to work with several government agencies to obtain funds to fix it [the water issues],” said West. “Today [Monday, Jan. 9] we are getting all the water district Infrastructure engineered, grant free. It will help us obtain more grants.”

The MWD Board of Directors will meet for their monthly meeting tonight (Tuesday) at 7 p.m.. The meeting will be held in the Mapleton Lions Club building, 88148 Riverview Ave.The public is encouraged to attend.

West provides frequent updates on this situation and any district business on her Facebook page (www.facebook.com/vanessa.west.98499).

For updates from Mapleton School District go to www.mapleton.k12.or.us/.