Fire Destroys Regional Water Pump Station

Many communities without water for a time as the association worked to install temporary pumps that currently are working and filling towers in the affected areas

    AVOCA – A fire at a Regional Water Rural Water Association booster station used to pump water to nearby communities was completely destroyed by fire early Friday morning, July 2 which led to a temporary, possible shortage of water, mandatory water use restrictions and a mandatory boil advisory for areas of western Iowa, including Shelby and Pottawattamie Counties.
    Nicholas Gaul, manager, said the fire completely wiped out the station, and many customers were affected.
    The fire was identified at 10:10 a.m. Friday morning, and the cause is under investigation.  The blaze disabled the facility’s ability to pump water to some towers in the region.
    Customers in Kirkman, Persia, Tennant and Westphalia have been affected as have those towns that buy water from Regional Water including Earling, Portsmouth, Panama, and Minden.
    The water outage essentially affected all customers west of Highway 59.
    The fire came at a difficult time for Iowans already dealing with drought conditions and water use restrictions, but immediately employees of Regional Water went to work on a temporary fix that got water pumping again while the association awaited a new booster station that was on its way Saturday.  
    A third pump is on standby.
    “An entire booster station is on a semi truck right now on its way here,” said Gaul Saturday.
    By Saturday evening, it was reported Regional Water was starting to pump water into towers again, but out of an abundance of caution, mandatory water use restrictions and mandatory boil advisories were issued for customers in the region including those in northeast Pottawattamie County and a portion of Shelby County.

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