The Suffolk County Water Authority has urged residents to use water prudently, as the heat wave that blanketed Long Island last week brought what is believed to be an all time peak for water pumpage in the county.
Per-minute water pumpage reached 533,000 gallons per minute at 5:42 a.m. Friday morning, the highest recorded rate in the authority’s history, exceeding the rate of 523,400 gallons per minute recorded on July 18, 2012. Though SCWA is prepared to handle the additional demand, sensible conservation efforts during peak hours will help to ensure that reserve supplies for fire protection and critical services are always available. Peak usage hours are between 4 a.m. and 8 a.m., primarily due to the widespread use of timed lawn water systems during these hours.
“The recent heat wave has boosted our pumping figures significantly this month after a fairly quiet June, due to heavy rains,” said SCWA Chief Executive Officer Jeff Szabo. “We have taken all necessary measures to make sure that our infrastructure is capable of continuing to deliver a sufficient drinking water supply for our customers, even during the current heat wave.”
SCWA water pumpage hit peaks of 518,000 gallons per minute in 2011 and 522,830 gallons per minute in 2010. Last Friday morning, from 5 a.m. to 6 a.m. alone, SCWA pumped more than 32 million gallons of water, almost exclusively due to irrigation.
The Suffolk County Water Authority is an independent public-benefit corporation operating under the authority of the Public Authorities Law of the State of New York. Serving approximately 1.2 million Suffolk County residents, the authority operates without taxing power on a not-for-profit basis.