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Public Works

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Cemetery Division | Highway Division | Water Division | Brush Dump | Construction Standards | Fees | Forms and Templates | Reports | Tree Warden

Superintendent

Michael Lavin ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )

Asst. Superintendent

Douglas Valovcin ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )

Address:

360 Taunton Street
Wrentham, MA 02093

Billing Address:

P.O. Box 658
Wrentham, MA 02093

Hours:

September / April

Monday - Friday
7:00 am to 3:30 pm

May / August

Monday - Thursday
7:00 am to 5:30 pm

Phone Number:

(508) 384-5477

Fax Number:

(508) 384-5481

 

Town of Wrentham Water Ban – Effective July 1, 2016

Following four months of unusually dry weather, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts declared a Drought Watch for Central and Northeast Massachusetts and a Drought Advisory for Southeast Massachusetts and the Connecticut River Valley. 

According to our agreement with the Department of Environmental Protection, the Town of Wrentham must meet the state standard of 65 residential gallons per capita per day (RGPCD). Wrentham’s average summer withdrawals over the last five years have been more than 95% higher than winter demand.

Currently, the Town’s aquifer water supplies have experienced a significant drop in the space of a month and are extremely low due to excessively high demand for water for outdoor use.   These conditions raise serious public safety concerns including increased risk for wildfires and possible contamination of the water supply as the aquifer’s water levels continue to decrease.

To combat this hazard, a ban on all non-essential outdoor water use is required to meet public health and safety needs.  Therefore, effective immediately, all outdoor watering by sprinkler is banned and only hand watering (from a hose or watering can) is allowed.   Also, any outdoor burning or fires are banned as well.

The state’s latest drought status update can be found at www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/water-res-protection/water-data-tracking/drought-status.html

This watering ban is mandatory for all residents using town water and voluntary for residents with private wells. The town will notify residents when the state lifts the Drought Advisory.

How Residents Can Help

Unfortunately, lawn watering does not return to our ground water as is commonly thought. Some of it evaporates in the air and on the surface especially in extremely hot weather. And, depending on soil type, the rest may take years to reach an aquifer.

Things you can do today to help the town conserve water include:

  • Leave lawn clippings on the grass. This cools the ground and holds in moisture.
  • While fertilizers promote growth, they also increase water consumption. Let your lawn go dormant (brown).
  • Remember to shut off automatic sprinkler system timers
  • Hand-water flower and vegetable gardens
  • Water deeply once a week at night or early in the morning to promote healthy root systems and avoid evaporation. More frequent watering results in shallow root systems that decrease the hardiness of lawns and plants.
  • Use a broom to clean patios, sidewalks and driveways
  • Use commercial car washes that recycle their water.

Wrentham Water Ban FAQ

Q: What is a Drought Advisory and what causes it to be triggered?
A: A Drought Advisory, the second of five levels of drought conditions outlined in the Massachusetts Drought Management Plan, indicates a level of dry conditions that warrant closer tracking by government agencies. The decline of the state's rainfall since March led to the drought condition, with cumulative precipitation deficits of four to five inches below normal for the months of April, May and June. For the months of May and June, precipitation was less than 61 percent of normal. Data from the state’s groundwater, streamflow and reservoir monitoring network show very low levels for the beginning of July.
Q: How does this affect me as a resident?
A: Effective immediately, residents can no longer use sprinklers or automated lawn irrigations systems to water their lawns due to the amount of water wasted by those systems. Flower and vegetable gardens, or other plants/bushes/trees may be watered by hand using a hose or a watering can. Also, by order of the Fire Chief, outdoor burning and fires are prohibited until the Drought Advisory is lifted.
Q: What if I have a private well?
A: Currently, only those residents using town water are required to comply with the watering ban under our current bylaws; however, private wells also draw from the same aquifers that supply town water, so voluntary compliance on the part of homeowners with a private well is greatly appreciated.
Q: What happens if I don’t comply?
A: By not complying with the state mandated water ban you put yourself and other residents at risk by creating a public safety hazard. If there were to be a fire (caused by lightning or a discarded cigarette), inadequate water levels may impede the fire department’s ability to control the fire. Also, as the town’s wells levels lower and demand remains, they begin to pull water from around the well increasing the likelihood of contamination. Violations may also result in a fine ($50 – first violation, $100 – second violation, $200 – third violation).
Q: Doesn’t water used to water the lawn return to the groundwater?
A: No. Using sprinklers or lawn irrigation systems cause a fair amount of the water to evaporate as it is exposed to the heat while in the air and when laying on the surface of the lawn. The rest, depending on soil type and rockiness, can take years – even decades – to reach an aquifer. This has been proven by geological surveys that have been tracking the decline of water resources for years.
Q: So what can I do to help?
A:
  • Leave lawn clippings on the grass. This cools the ground and holds in moisture.
  • Don’t fertilize your lawn. While fertilizers promote growth, they also increase water consumption. Let your lawn go dormant (brown).
  • Remember to shut off automatic sprinkler system timers
  • Hand-water flower and vegetable gardens
  • Water deeply once a week at night or early in the morning to promote healthy root systems and avoid evaporation. More frequent watering results in shallow root systems that decrease the hardiness of lawns and plants.
  • Use a broom to clean patios, sidewalks and driveways
  • Use commercial car washes that recycle their water
Q: Where can I find more information on water conservation?
A: There are many resources online. Here are a few…