In the third week of a declared water emergency for the town water system, there is still no defined timeline for relief. As of Tuesday afternoon, the town engineer said all three repaired pumps work at capacity. Unfortunately, leaks in the old pipes still deplete the water supply faster than the tanks can refill. Monday night, the water was completely shut off for several hours to replenish the supply.
Mr. Mohammad, town water operator, has indicated that most of the new town water system is up and running. The contractor is working to get all the new meters set and working. Mohammad says getting the old lines killed is taking much longer than expected.
One of the most significant issues is that no one knows precisely where the old pipes are. There is no definitive map of the old system of water lines from the 1950 installation. To combat some of these problems, the Louisiana Rural Water Association offered its services again to the town. There must be a formal request for help from the town, and none had been made until Tuesday afternoon.
This morning, LRWA mobilized 6 or more people to help locate leaks and old water lines. These engineers and field technicians will bring flow meters, listening devices, and ground-penetrating radar to assist local contractors in finding and resolving leak issues in the old pipes. The town has agreed to have additional crews with the water contractor to immediately cap any lines with leaks. The town has a contractor contracted to do the repairs and switch over all the water lines. They will continue to honor this contract.
A protest walk that will highlight the frustrations of townspeople is being organized. This proposed walk on September 12 is scheduled to start at the Courthouse at 4:30 p.m. and move to city hall.