S&WB asks NOLA residents to stop running their water

Chris Miller
January 03, 2018 - 11:34 am

The New Orleans Sewerage & Water Board is telling its customers to stop running their faucets, now that the temperature has risen above freezing. The water system says too much running water is reducing water pressure in the system.

"To keep up with the high demand, water pressure across the system was reduced this morning to around 62 pounds-per-square-inch. This is a typical response to manage stress on the system during such events as freezes and large water main breaks," the water board explained in a news release. "Normal average water pressure typically hovers around 68-72 psi."

Temperatures overnight fell below freezing for several hours, and to prevent pipes from freezing and possibly bursting, many residents run a continuous trickle of water. But if too many residents open their faucets at once, that trickle can have a cumulative effect on the system.

"If residents must run their water to keep pipes from freezing, the Sewerage & Water Board urges them to do so only after temperatures drop below the freezing point: 32 degrees Fahrenheit," reads the statement. 

"They should run only the faucet farthest from their property’s main stop valve. The stream should be no more than 1/16 of an inch wide, about 'pencil lead thin,'" according to the statement.

The Sewerage & Water Board said reduced pressure could also hamper the fire department's ability to draw water necessary to fight fires.

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