When needed most, water shortage hit

When its super hot, people need water to cool off, to water gardens, and livestock. Farmers have spring spraying which uses water. It all came together last week, spiking the demand upon the RM of Wallace-Woodworth municipal water system.

Many rely upon this water utility. Water sourced in the Miniota Valley is pumped to a treatment station nearby within the RM of W-W. There’s a reservoir there and from that, pumps push the water thousands of kilometres.

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The Wallace-Woodworth pipeline flows to Maryfield, Sask. and into the RM of Pipestone, as well as serving all of Ward 2 portion of Wallace-Woodworth (Kenton has a separate supply).

Last Thursday, June 3, customers received a warning on their phones to restrict their water usage. CAO for Wallace-Woodworth Garth Mitchell explained, “We are experiencing extremely high water usage that is exceeding our plant’s ability to produce treated water. It’s not an issue of … our supply well.”

As Manitoba endured a heat wave last week, the Province did a quick about face with public health orders to allow swimming pools and spray parks to open as places for people to cool off.

Reston’s spray park couldn’t have opened, even if municipal staff had been prepared, due to the water shortage. There’s water testing and servicing of the system before a spray park can open. However, Reston has a man-made lake on the edge of town, so people had a place to head to.

Elkhorn Spray Park did open last weekend because the village is not on the RM water system. The spray park has its own groundwater well, and the spray park is a re-circulating system that retreats and re-uses the water so its water usage is very minimal.

In an update on June 9, customers were thanked for cooperating to reduce consumption, enabling the water utility to keep up to demands and begin to replenish the reservoir.

The notice also said:“At this time, we will remove our “Reduce Consumption” restriction on our system…  re-open truck fills at Kola and our Ward 2 Water Treatment Plant…. Untreated municipal wells will also return to normal billing status.

We ask for your continued cooperation on “responsible” water consumption as we continue to investigate water leak reports, experience seasonally high water demand and we address our water treatment plant capacity issues”.

As of Wednesday, no leaks had been located.



The RM of Wallace-Woodworth also imposed a burning ban last Friday, June 4, prohibiting all open burning, bonfires, yard waste burning and restricted yard waste burning. Fines and fire fighting costs would apply if the order is contravened.

Recent rain may mean a change, so check the website to stay up to date: www.wallace-woodworth.com

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