Fairmead Residents Must Boil Water Before Drinking

January 12, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
People in a Madera County community are one step closer to having clean drinking water in their homes again.Families in Fairmead are being told to boil their water before drinking it because the town's water pumps failed.

Poli Quezada and his family have running water in their home for the first time in two days. The Fairmead family was forced to go without water because two failed water wells.

"It's dirty water, but I mean we are getting some water but we still have clean water they had given us," says Quezada.

Madera County crews stacked bottled water inside Quezada's house and have been doing the same for 500 other Fairmead residents

Reports came Friday morning from neighbors about low water pressure in their homes. County crews tried activating the back up well to compensate but its motor failed.

District manager Brett Richards says the main well's pump was spinning in the water but only sucking up air.

"And we began our regular routine processes to start analyzing it. We couldn't get water out of the ground so we called the pump company and pulled the pumps and that's a long process," says Richards.

Richards and the pump company decided to place the pump 20-feet deeper in the main well. It's now drawing water 280 feet below ground.

"If we had not pulled water out of the ground, if we had not succeeded with this solution it would've been a serious situation," says Richards.

Quezada says it's a relief to see running water back in his sinks and toilets, because he was beginning to worry about his family's health.

"We couldn't shower so we have to go find where to shower, go to other residents you know family members and stuff," says Quezada.

County crews plan to have both wells completely operational by Monday.


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