Mother Nature lending a hand to ease Sparta's water crunch

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:13

    SPARTA-Sparta and Byram residents are currently dodging a bullet when it comes to the municipality's water supply. Although several Sparta wells are currently off line because of contamination, spring weather has provided plenty of rainfall, which is making up the difference for those on the township water system. "With what those seven wells were capable of supplying, we lost the capacity of about half of a million gallons per day," said Municipal Engineer Charles Ryan. If in fact the warm weather had arrived without rainfall, Sparta would have been particularly susceptible to drought regulations. To help avoid the possibility of water restrictions in the future, planning is currently under way to develop four new wells near White Lake Road. The new water supply is tentatively scheduled to be online by the summer of 2005. In addition, Ryan said, the township is looking into the possibility of treating one or two of the Seneca Lake wells taken offline due to uranium contamination. If the uranium could be removed with treatment, it would create yet another source of water for the township. Because drought conditions do not currently exist, only the year-round rules that have always existed on water usage are in effect for the township. Under these guidelines, residents are allowed to utilize outdoor water every other day. The only way that additional rules would be instated, would be if the summer brings drought conditions. "At this point, there is no concern with the summer weather, but if Mother Nature hits us with what we had two years ago, that could be a different story," said Ryan.