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Redding Preparing Water System For Wildfire Debris

Drinking water for the City of Redding will be impacted by the Carr, Delta and Hirz Fires this Winter. The city utility gets some of its water from Whiskeytown Lake and Lake Shasta by way of the Sacramento River. The huge unprecedented wildfires all burned to one or more shorelines on the waterways. As rains fall, a large amount of debris will wash downhill and significantly increase ash and sediment in the municipal water supply. City engineers say the load may be more than the water treatment systems can handle. Preparations are being made to suspend all surface water diversions and instead rely on groundwater from the city’s wells. A temporary pump station is being built near city hall to divert water from the Enterprise area to the west and north sides of town. It’s believed that the Enterprise sources will provide plenty of water for all of Redding, and neighboring water agencies as well. Other preparations for Winter involve efforts to minimize the flow of as much of the sediments as possible before they reach the river. Bids are being taken for erosion control projects along the river trail, as well as culvert protection in the fire affected areas. Information for private property owners to prepare for the winter can be found at shastareddingrecovers.org.