What is referred to as 'boils' have presented outside of the new earthen dam and are generating the water loss. At the recent Town Board of Commissioner's meeting, Public Works Director Perry Williams described the situation to the commissioners.
"What's happening is that small areas have appeared outside of the dam that look like mini volcanos," Williams said. As these bubble up, water loss is occurring in the reservoir. We have contacted the engineering firm and asked that they determine the problem."
Williams said that the engineers, Hobbs Upchurch and Associates, have contacted the company who did the original soil testing before the reservoir and dam were built and asked that they do a core sample test and to examine the boils to help determine the problem.
"The reservoir was completed in August of 2009," Williams said. "At that time, we started filing it up, but it didn't go online then. When it was full, we cut the water off to it. We started noticing that the water level was decreasing and were told by the engineers that that was normal absorption.
"These little places (boils) started coming up on the outside of the dam last summer and we've been monitoring ever since," he said. "We had the contractor and the engineer come out and visit the site. The state inspector came and suggested we build a small dam outside the original dam to be able to monitor the water loss. At this time, we're loosing about 100,000 gallons of raw, untreated water a day. There is no cost of water, because it's untreated, but there is the cost of the electricity and the pipes. On average, we use approximately 800,000 gallons of water daily."
The implied warranty for the construction of the reservoir and dam expired in August of 2010. The implied warranty of the pump system and piping will expire next month in March of 2011.
The reservoir covers an area of approximately five acres and holds approximately 28 million gallons of water. The reservoir itself has an all earthen base. The dam is lined with matting and rip rap. The cost of the dam when built was approximately $500,000.
The reservoir and dam were put on line in March of 2010.
Williams said there does not appear to be any problems with the pumping station or the piping system.
The town serves 1,650 total customers for water with 23 of those customers being commercial users. With inside town limit and outside town limit usage the total number of gallons sold in January of 2011 was 5,893,000.
"We're waiting on the soil test and advice from the engineers as how to solve the problem," Williams said. "We expect the test to be conducted in the near future."