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Water Supply Alert
Water Alert

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July 2010

Shutdown a Success
Pipeline Repaired Ahead of Schedule

Assisted by unseasonably mild weather and the water-saving help of consumers, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, in collaboration with our member agency, the Municipal Water District of Orange County (MWDOC), in early June successfully shut down and repaired a major supply pipeline serving Orange County.

Metropolitan routinely schedules shutdowns of its facilities during the winter—when temperatures usually are cooler and demands are lower—to complete inspections and perform maintenance and upgrades with the least impact on consumers.

However, an inspection of the Allen-McColloch Pipeline—a regional water line serving communities from Yorba Linda south to San Clemente—earlier this year revealed sections that needed immediate repair. This meant local agencies would not have the six- to eight-month lead-time usually provided by Metropolitan to plan their water supply and storage options during the eight-day shutdown.

A coordinated effort involving Metropolitan, MWDOC and several local water agencies was launched. This included asking for precautionary water-saving efforts among residents and businesses in the affected area during the duration of the week-long shutdown.

Metropolitan’s 26-mile Allen-McColloch Pipeline extends from the district’s Robert B. Diemer Water Treatment Plant in Yorba Linda to the El Toro Reservoir in Lake Forest. The line is the primary source of supplemental, imported water to south county communities served by the Municipal Water District of Orange County, which relies on Metropolitan supplies for about 50 percent of its water needs.

During the repair, Metropolitan shut down the pipeline and drained portions of the high-pressure line. After excavating the repair sites, crews cut away the weakened sections of pre-stressed concrete cylinder pipe and replaced them with welded-steel pipe.

Efficient water use by residents and businesses, along with cooler temperatures, helped the region, particularly south Orange County, through the shutdown and repair without disruptions or inconveniences. In addition, water system interconnections shared between local water agencies and cities offered added safeguards ensuring the region maintained adequate water during the outage.

Work went so smoothly the pipeline was returned to service a day earlier than planned.

“The shutdown was a well-coordinated, seamless example of successful collaboration among Metropolitan, the Municipal Water District of Orange County, the affected retail agencies and the contractor,” said MWDOC General Manager Kevin Hunt. “Metropolitan’s leadership was exemplary.”

This newsletter is produced by the:
Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
700 N. Alameda St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012