Grass Valley, Calif. May 9, 2017 – The effects from one of the wettest years on record are still being felt. Heavy rains in early February created a landslide that caused significant damage to Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s (PG&E) South Yuba Canal in the Lowell Hill area east of Nevada City. The canal is owned and operated by PG&E and serves the Deer Creek Powerhouse; in addition it is one of the main water conveyance facilities for Nevada Irrigation District (NID), supplying homes, businesses, farms, and ranches throughout Nevada County. The slide caused a section of the elevated canal to break free of its footings, creating a breach and interrupting service.
PG&E notified NID and identified plans to restore the South Yuba Canal after the landslide took out approximately 100 feet of flume in early February. Following the discovery, NID declared a state of emergency to help expedite repairs to the damaged flume to minimize the impacts to customers. PG&E’s work to restore the canal has diligently continued on steep and shifting terrain during ongoing winter storms into April. Unfortunately, the continued wet weather through April has caused delays to the restoration schedule.
NID has been utilizing all available supplies and numerous pumping facilities to keep pace with customer demand. These measures have provided adequate flows, but may not be sustainable as natural runoff dwindles.
To maintain adequate water supply, NID is asking the community for a 25% voluntary reduction in usage from May 15 until May 31 when the canal is expected to return to service.
NID is asking treated water customers in and around Grass Valley and Nevada City to limit outdoor watering. Agricultural customers located in the Chicago Park/ Alta Sierra/Penn Valley area and down the Highway 49 corridor are also asked to limit their water use wherever possible.
“The District thanks you for your efforts in conserving during this anticipated brief reduction in service, and expects full deliveries to be restored by the first week in June,” said NID Water Operations Manager, Chip Close.
PG&E is committed to keeping NID updated as conditions change and work nears completion.
NID will post updates on the repair effort on its website. For information, see the Irrigation Water Outages link at www.nidwater.com.