Pine Averts Memorial Day Water Disaster

Broken water line repaired; customers won't be charged for water hauling

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Pine Water Company went to Stage 4 conservation measures this week, after one of its larger lines broke. But, as of press time, the company was back at Stage 2.

"It happened late Saturday night and our guys were right on it," said Myndi Brogdon, spokesperson for Pine Water Company and its owner, Brooke Utilities.

She said they have to abide by OSHA rules, so their guys could only work 16 hours at a stretch.

"But they should be applauded for getting on the ground and replacing an aging section of the system so quickly," Brogdon said.

The water was quickly shut off, so it didn't deplete the system completely.

Brogdon said the section of water pipe that broke was under Highway 87 between the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Uncle Tom's Kwik Stop. It was installed in the 1980s.

"We've never had a break this big," Brogdon said.

As breaks in the old system have occurred, the company has tried to, not only replace the broken section, but also the lines on either side of the break, she said. "So far, about 60 percent of the system has been replaced."

The break forced the company to begin hauling water by truck on Tuesday, but as of 8 a.m. Thursday, hauling had ceased.

"Because it was a break and not demand, we will not be charging for the hauling we did from Tuesday until Thursday morning," Brogdon said. However, if demand forces the company back to higher conservation stages, requiring hauling to resume, that will be billed.

She urges residents and visitors to use conservation measures during the holiday weekend and the rest of the summer, using bottled water as often as possible.

Brooke Utilities operates a number of small water companies in the Rim Country. Brogdon said its East Verde system is at Stage 4 now, which requires the company to haul water to service its customers.

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