There is yet another reason to conserve water here in the high desert.
A chlorine supply chain disruption has local utilities encouraging customers to reduce how much they water to extend existing supplies of the disinfectant.
The chlorine shortage is affecting domestic water suppliers locally, and up and down the West Coast.
The water remains clean and safe according to officials despite a shortage of chlorine used to treat drinking water, and to process wastewater.
An equipment failure at a Washington manufacturing facility is causing the problems.
Redmond’s public works director is watching the situation closely.
“We have an on-hand supply that will get us out to about mid-August,” said Bill Deurden, Redmond Public Works Director. “We are taking some steps to reduce our consumption rate to extend that. That’s based on what we would typically see during summer time usage. So as people continue their water conservation efforts and reduce that consumption, that’s going to help us out even better.”
Chlorine production is expected to resume later this month.
The big questions for Bend’s utilities director is how long will water suppliers have to wait before they can resupply.
“Until we have a clear idea of the road ahead, we are asking customers to conserve water,” said Mike Buettner, City of Bend Utilities Director. “That will help us prolong our current supplies of chlorine-based products.”
He insists the public can continue to use water for drinking, cooking and bathing.
But local and state officials are asking people to limit outdoor use, such as watering lawns, washing cars or filling swimming pools, to extend existing chlorine supplies.