Water Cutback to Be Asked of 600,000 Over 4 Days

Times Staff Writer

About 600,000 residents of areas scattered from Brea to El Toro will be asked to cut back their water use starting Monday as the county shuts down a key water-processing station for improvements.

Regions affected are the canyon areas of Brea and Yorba Linda, the eastern portions of the cities of Orange and Tustin, the northern half of Irvine, the city of Mission Viejo and the communities of Laguna Niguel, El Toro and Lake Forest.

The 4-day closure will allow modifications to increase the efficiency of the Robert B. Diemer Filtration Plant. The plant normally pumps about 400 million gallons of water a day to local water districts, which in turn distribute to county residents, officials said.

Work Rescheduling Asked


Residents will be asked to curtail their normal water usage starting Monday evening and ending Thursday. During that time, residents will be asked not to water their lawns or gardens or wash their cars. They also will be asked to reduce water usage for washing clothes and dishes.

Local construction companies have been asked to reschedule some work.

Officials of the Orange County Municipal Water District said the 25-year-old plant must be upgraded because of booming growth in the south county. The plant will get a new chlorination device, water pumps and several new reservoir gates, increasing water-processing capacity by 25%.

Repair crews will work day and night on the project. Service should be restored to normal by noon Thursday, according to Stanley Sprague, water district general manager.


During the shutdown, the communities will continued to receive water from two Metropolitan Water District plants in Los Angeles County, Weymuth in La Verne and Jensen in Granada Hills.

Additional supplies of water will come from area ground water reserves and in part from small reserve tanks that are normally used as a backup in case of natural disasters, according to Timothy H. Skrove, a spokesman for the district.