Underwater Breathing Room for Graham

Underwater Breathing Room for Graham

A new pump station is in the works at Lake Graham, and thanks to a misprint in the original plans of the lake, the city of Graham may have stumbled upon two years of additional water supply.

Last summer Graham was scrambling for water sources to hit the average six million gallons a day that citizens use. Initially, officials were going to work at lake Eddleman to replace two broken pumps.

"We had a failure at one pump and then we found that the pumps were not installed according to the initial plans by an elevation of 9 feet," said Dean Hinton, the Engineer in charge of the project, "so there's 9 feet of water that couldn't come out of Lake Eddleman."

Graham leaders decided to look over old Lake Graham plans to try and find other outlets. They found a discrepancy.

"The original set had 1,050 feet for the outlet, but the marked up set had 1,044 feet, so we crossed our fingers and went looking for it and found that it was actually built at about elevation 1040 feet, which gives us nearly 20 feet of water," Hinton said.

With an average of five feet of water lost in the lake every year, that gives the city two more years of water.

But, what about until the project is completed three months from now? the elevation of Lake Graham is close to its critical level of 1,060 feet with the existing pump system. Just in case, engineers have a diesel power pump which, if employed, will pump 3.4 million gallons a day.

"This pump will provide adequate water through the wintertime and through the summer in a very desperate situation, but it meets our normal wintertime operating demand," Hinton said.

Dave Caulfield, Newschannel 6