September 10, 2014

Planning for a power outage

Preliminary budget reviewed

By STU MERRY

Garrison city officials hope for the best, but Monday night they took steps to plan for the worst at their annual preliminary budget meeting.

In the proposed 2015 budget, the council planned to earmark $40,000 for a trailer mount portable generator.

While power outages are far and few between, if an outage of any duration happened in Garrison, residents, and even customers of Garrison Rural Water District, could be impacted in multiple ways.

Discussing the generator, city officials reason that if power is lost for any period of time at the water intake structure on the shores of Lake Sakakawea at Fort Stevenson State Park, water service would be interrupted. Getting water to the treatment plant would be impossible.

"We can’t do it without power," said maintenance supervisor Alan Beyreis. "If we don’t have it we are done."

Another aspect talked about was if the main lift station lost power. The city’s waste water system is gravity flow, but needs to be pumped to nearby lagoons. If power was lost, back-flow problems could occur, and that would come up through residents’ basement drains.

"We need a reliable back up generator to handle our waste water system, and without it we are in trouble," Beyreis told the council.

Following the meeting, Beyreis said a reliable trailer mount generator would also be needed to supply power to the city’s emergency well, as a secondary water supply, in case the water plant is unable to operate. "Under reduced water usage we should be able to keep water pressure in the distribution system with the emergency well water," he said.


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