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Newport Declares Water Emergency

Updated: Jun 25, 2020

The City of Newport Water Treatment Plant has been having difficulty meeting water

demand, and the city has reached a point where it is necessary to declare a local

emergency and enact water curtailment requirements. Earlier today, a temporary

declaration of emergency was issued. A copy is attached.

The city has now issued Stage 2 Water Curtailment/Restrictions effective immediately.

A Stage 2 water use curtailment/restriction is issued when unplanned maintenance/repairs or construction activities occur that significantly affect the water treatment plant or storage and distribution system operations in a short term manner.

This Stage 2 curtailment:

The City of Newport Water Treatment Plant has been having difficulty meeting water

demand, and the city has reached a point where it is necessary enact water use

restrictions. Those restrictions follow:

1. Use of irrigation systems for lawns, gardens, and landscaping is prohibited. Hand-

watering is allowed.

2. The outdoor washing of equipment, vehicles, pavement, or other facilities is

prohibited unless required for public health or safety.

3. The filling of pools and spas (hot tubs) is prohibited.

4. The operation of fountains and waterfalls is prohibited.

5. The irrigation of public lands is prohibited.

6. The flushing of water lines and firefighting drills involving water consumption is


7. Hotels/motels, restaurants, gyms, and similar businesses are required to post

notices regarding mandatory conservation measures.

8. Commercial laundry should be consolidated and delayed to the extent possible.

All residents and businesses are required to fully participate in curtailing water use

pursuant to the provisions noted above. These water restrictions are due to unplanned repairs that affect the City of Newport Water Treatment Plant.

The City of Newport thanks its residents and businesses for working together to

resolve this very serious situation. The problem at the Water Treatment Plant is that the membrane filters are quickly plugging, cutting production from approximately 2600 gallons per minute down to 1600 gallons per minute. Water Treatment Plant personnel have been working with the manufacturer of the membrane filters, and have determined that the filter plugging is due to iron accumulation over time, which has finally reached the point where it is now causing production issues.

The city’s water distribution system is down to approximately one-half of the normal treated water storage. Without a curtailment in water demand, within two days, the city will not be able to provide water for fire protection in some areas and will lose the ability to provide water for some customers. City staff is working with seafood processors to mitigate, to the extent possible, any financial impact on those businesses and the fishermen.

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