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Posted on: March 30, 2021

Major Pipeline Repair April 4 - May 10

South County pipeline 2

Beginning on April 4 through May 10, our wholesaler, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California will begin a major repair of the 60-inch pipeline that delivers a majority of water to the region. While the District does not plan on there being service interruptions during the 37-day repair project, we are asking all customers to use water extra wisely and to be prepared for voluntary reductions throughout the project. 

Santa Margarita Water’s drinking water demand during this project will be roughly 720 million gallons. You may ask, "where will our water come from while the main pipeline is out of commission for 37 days”?   The short answer is, Santa Margarita Water has been planning and investing in local, reliable and sustainable water supplies and infrastructure for decades for times just like this.

  • 586 million gallons will come from the Baker Water Treatment Plant, a local drinking water treatment plant that Santa Margarita Water and other regional partners invested in 15 years ago. The Baker Plant has the capacity to treat 28.1 million gallons of imported untreated drinking water per day.

  • 137 million gallons will be imported through an alternate pipeline that runs west of our service area. Through decades of strong partnerships with other water utilities in the region, the District is able to move water through alternative routes around the pipeline being repaired and into our system.

  • If any interruption should occur or if demand dictates, the remaining water will come from storage that has been constructed over the last 15 years right here in the community.

Santa Margarita Water has a three-month supply at the ready for emergencies, earmarked for essential indoor drinking water requirements. By 2030, the District aims to have a six-month supply in place through investing in a water portfolio approach. The District continues to work towards its strategic goal to have 30% local water supply by 2030 to reduce its dependence on imported water. This is water within 20 miles of our service area.

Another of the ways Santa Margarita Water has prepared for situations such as this is the District's investment in providing recycled water to nearly all of the communities it serves. Every gallon of water that is recycled and reused for irrigation, construction, or lakefill is a gallon of drinking water that can be used by families across the District.  It is why the District has invested in its water reclamation plants and built three large reservoirs to store the treated recycled water. 

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