While the town of Paonia's boil order has been lifted and water is flowing from most water taps, the town is urging all water users to conserve water as much as possible until further notice. Water users are asked to take short showers and do laundry only when necessary, and turn faucets off while brushing teeth or performing other activities.
Because the amount of water flowing out of the town's two-million gallon Lamborn Mesa tank exceeds the amount flowing in, town administrator Ken Knight said Tuesday that "Yes, absolutely, people need to conserve on water." After last year's unusually low precipitation, town water production from springs is less than 25 percent of normal winter production. "The springs didn't re-charge quickly," said Knight. "We really need to get one-third to one-half full or we will re-create the (emergency) situation."
On Tuesday, the town informed all private out-of-town water companies, excluding those serving Pitkin and Bone mesas, that their water would be shut off to allow the tanks to re-fill. The move ensures that schools and businesses can continue to have enough water to remain open and in operation, said Knight.
For those without water service, bottled water continues to be available at Town Hall, and customers can fill containers from a potable water truck parked behind Town Hall. The town was also waiting on a raw water tank from Delta County, which can be used for flushing toilets.
Updates will continue to be posted regularly on the town website, www.townofpaonia.com, and on the "Town of Paonia, Colorado" Facebook page.