GRANTS PASS – Demand for fresh water in Grants Pass was at an all-time high for the months of March and April, with the city’s aging Water Treatment Plant working overtime to produce enough water to meet the increasing needs of city water customers.
Water production during the month of March came close to 113 million gallons of water, crushing the previous record set in 2007 by more than seven million gallons.
“We attribute the higher demand for water to hotter than normal temperatures, and the current pandemic that has kept people in their homes,” said Public Works Director Jason Canady.
In April, monthly water production totals topped 171 million gallons. That total is 51 million gallons higher than the average month of April, representing seven additional days of average water production totals, and shattering the April 2007 record by 49 million gallons of water.
“High flows at this time of year are a challenge for staff, who must juggle schedules to ensure that production can be met at a time of year when the plant cannot operate at a higher flow rate due to colder water temperatures,” said Canady.
The record all-time maximum total monthly production of more than 334 million gallons was set in July 2018, when according to the Farmer’s Almanac temperatures reached or exceeded the monthly average high-point at least 10 days during that month, making it the fifth hottest July on record dating back to 1911, according to the National Weather Service.
“The importance of a reliable fresh water supply can not be over-emphasized, especially in times of increased demand for water,” said Canady.