“It is the Quantity not Quality of the village water supply that has created an emergency condition”, Village of Cold Spring Water Dept., Supt. Greg Phillips stated this morning regarding an event which prompted closure of the Haldane Central School District. The reservoir, which contains the raw water supply to the Foundry Brook Water Treatment Plant, was found to be lower than the main intake level for the facility yesterday afternoon. Recent ice cover of the small reservoir, due to frigid temperatures,
masked the true level of the supply. An inspection of the reservoir yesterday afternoon revealed that the ice cap had succumbed to increased temps and collapsed to the true level of the water, approximately 4’ below.
The immediate step taken was to increase flow from the Village’s two main storage reservoirs, by opening the outlet valve of the Lower Cold Spring Reservoir along Foundry Pond Road in Philipstown. “It is a twelve inch diameter pipe, flowing near its maximum rate to send water to the Foundry Brook, the conveyance of raw water to the treatment facility,” according to Phillips. Apparently the main issue is the 2.5 miles that the water must traverse, overland, from point to point which delays the timeline. Phillips added, “It takes almost 8 hours from the time a valve is turned, until the first signs of increased flows show up at the facility reservoir.”
Phillips met with Mayor Dave Merandy last evening to inform him of the situation. During discussion it was determined that there was high probability that the Haldane buildings, specifically the high school would experience low water pressure on Friday. They agreed it would be better to cancel, pre-emptively, rather than wait and see what the morning would bring. A call was placed to School Superintendent Diana Bowers, and the plan was implemented.
“Pressure is relative to several variables, but mainly elevation – in our system,” Phillips said. “Every 2.3 feet of elevation of water translates to 1 pound per square inch (psi) available,” he added. When the storage tanks on Fishkill Road are full (34.7’ in height) water pressure in the system is augmented by about 15 psi, which matters most to properties at higher elevations, such as the Haldane Campus.
Residents of the Villages of Cold Spring and Nelsonville, who get their potable supply from the distribution system, should not experience any water quality issues. The overall pressures will be lower, but the water in the tanks has been filtered and treated and is acceptable for consumption.
Mayor Merandy is asking that everyone in the system use water sparingly for the next several days, while the water supply recovers from the issue.