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Three Forks city officials ask residents to conserve water as reservoir struggles to keep up with demand

Posted at 5:50 PM, Aug 23, 2022

THREE FORKS — All 5 of the water wells in town in Three Forks pump water into a single reservoir. The problem is the reservoir isn’t keeping up to capacity. The city is now asking residents to conserve water, but Mayor Randy Johnston said there are plans in the works to fix this problem.

“We've lost about 120 gallons of water a minute from all of our wells,” said Johnston.

Johnston said the wells in town have started to decline due to drought. He also said losing 120 gallons of water a minute is a huge problem for Three Forks because they only have 300 gallons of water per minute coming out of all 5 wells.

To address this problem the city sent out a request in July that residents try to conserve water.

“We asked in our letter that went out that they do not water during the day, that they water more at night,” said Johnston.

WATCH: Extended interview with Mayor Randy Johnston

Extended interview: Three Forks Mayor Randy Johnston

Johnston said they are also asking residents to inspect for leaks and repair any found, also to turn off the faucet while brushing teeth, only run the washing machine or dishwater with a full load, and use low flow fixtures.

Johnston says hopefully, residents won't have to be so mindful of their water usage in the future because the city has received almost $4.2 million in grant awards that will go toward water supply and distribution improvements.

“We are expanding our water system because if we have just one well go down right now, we'll be in trouble,” said Johnston.

There are 4 different sites being considered for the new wells.

“We're hoping between all of the wells we might get up to 5-to-600 gallons a minute, plus the ones we have in town,” said Johnston.