Ogden mayor declares severe water shortage

May 4, 2022, 2:46 PM | Updated: May 5, 2022, 6:42 am
(KSL TV)...

OGDEN, Utah — Ogden City Mayor Mike Caldwell has signed a declaration of severe water shortage, which is effective immediately.

The decision was made following Tuesday evening’s City Council meeting where the council unanimously voted to move the city into Phase 2 of the Water Shortage Management Plan. Moving into this plan aligns with state efforts following Gov. Spencer Cox’s executive order that declared a state of emergency due to drought conditions on April 21.

According to a release, “Snowpack is well below normal, currently at 65% of median.  Pineview Reservoir storage is at 52% of capacity compared to 58% in 2021, and 74% in 2020. These numbers are indicative of the trends of diminishing reserves in our reservoirs. The water surface index for the Ogden River is currently at 9%.  This rating is based on a combination of soil moisture, snowpack, precipitation, and temperatures.  1% is the lowest in a 30-year period, with 99% being the highest over the same period.”

The following guidelines are effective immediately within city boundaries under the Mayor’s Declaration and Phase 2 of the Water Shortage Management Plan. The release states, “this phase of the water shortage plan will remain in effect until November 1st or until further notice.”

  • No outdoor irrigation between 10 am – 6 pm
  • Wait to water grass until it shows visible signs of stress. Waiting to water promotes deep root growth. Limit irrigation to 2 days per week.
  • 20 minutes per irrigation for pop-up sprays, 40-minutes for rotors (½-inch of water per irrigation).
  • All residential water customers of Ogden City are encouraged to reduce their water use by at least ten percent and commercial water customers are encouraged to implement a water management plan and reduce their water use by at least fifteen percent.
  • Maintain and properly adjust your irrigation system to avoid wasting water. Adjust watering times based on weather and follow the conservewater.utah.gov weekly watering guide. Grass needs less water than you think.
  • Use a swimming pool cover when the pool is not in use. Lower the pool water level by four inches to minimize water loss by splashing.
  • Avoid using outdoor fountains and ponds that spray above water surface.
  • Avoid hard-surface washing of sidewalks and driveways (Except for health or safety)
  • Use a positive pressure nozzle when washing vehicles.

Ogden has plans to consider a “Flip the Strip” program as an effort to encourage residents to switch over to drought-tolerant landscaping, reducing outdoor watering.  This item is currently under review with Ogden City Planning and will move forward for council consideration in the coming weeks.

For more water-saving ideas, visit OgdenWater.com, slowtheflow.org, and Utahwatersavers.com. To schedule a free water audit which will help determine the right watering application for your system, or for other questions regarding the water shortage, contact Ogden City Water Utility at 801-629-8329.

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Ogden mayor declares severe water shortage