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SoCal Residents Still Shouldn't Water Lawns Right Now, But Hang In There

The project to repair a critical pipeline in Southern California, forcing millions of residents to stop outdoor watering for two weeks, is almost done.

“This area tends to be more green just because it’s where we tend to water the most and congregate the most,” Adrian McGee said.

What was once lush with green grass is now patchy brown in most spots of McGee’s Pomona yard. That’s because he’s been drastically cutting back on his water usage under the outdoor water ban.

“We’ve been trying to cut back on everything — washing dishes, and not taking as long to shower. Little things like that,” he said.

He is one of the four million customers of Metropolitan Water District who have been asked to cut down water usage including all outdoor watering from Sept. 6 to 20.

During the two-week period, the MWD is making critical repairs to a pipeline in Riverside County which began leaking a few months ago.

“We are over the hump. We’ve actually replaced the leaking piece so we have the new piece installed, but we are not quite out of the woods yet because we have to test the pipe make sure that there are no leaks,” said Brent Yamasaki, the chief of operations for the water district.

He says the pipeline that is shutdown is the upper feeder pipeline which connects to the Colorado River. It’s one of two that feeds water to the greater Los Angeles-Orange County areas.

Ever since the conservation began, the district has been relying on the other pipeline that connects to water resources in Northern California.

“But that provides water from a very limited source and that is the reason why we needed people to conserve,” Yamasaki said.

He says customers have been stepping up to the plate, reducing their water usage by 30% on average.

“And I just wanted to say to everybody, thank you so much for taking the actions that are needed,” Yamasaki said.

It’s big win for everyone, especially as Southern California deals with a relentless drought, and a desperate need to conserve every last drop of water.

Water District officials say if all goes well this weekend, customers can start watering outdoors on Wednesday.

Source: NBC Los Angeles

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