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Empire's water woes come to an end

Water tanker in Empire, CO
Posted at 3:22 PM, Apr 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-07 17:23:02-04

EMPIRE, Colo. — The Town of Empire's water woes have come to an end, Mayor Wendy Koch and the Empire Police Department announced Thursday.

Police said the town's water treatment system is producing more than enough water to exceed system demands. Water storage tanks are full and the treatment system is providing water to the entire town, police continued.

Officials pointed to a significant pipe leak, high levels of manganese and iron in the town's well and frozen creeks as reasons for the lack of water for residents.

Several leaks were detected on private property and in private residents, according to the police department. Those have since been fixed.

Residents should have normal water flow at this time, however a few private taps are still off. Koch said this is due to either suspected leaks or known broken lines.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has rescinded the boil water notice. Residents can return to normal water usage, and there are cases of bottled water still available, according to Koch.

"I want to express my extreme appreciation to each of you for your patience and understanding of our recent water difficulties," Koch said in a press release. "I am aware of the inconveniences it has caused you. You, as the resident, are my primary concern, and we are always striving to improve services provided to you. It was wonderful to see the community pull together and support each other in our time of need."

Koch is also encouraging the community to support local businesses who were closed during this time.

"We are also aware of how difficult it has been for our local businesses to be closed during this time," Koch said. "If you are able, please support our local businesses with your patronage. It will be greatly appreciated. We are all looking forward to the 2022 summer season, let’s pull together to make it successful for everyone!"

The Town of Empire will complete an "after action review" and collect input from residents and stakeholders to mitigate future water issues, according to police.