Power was restored to the Lake Belton intake station Monday evening. (Photo by John Carroll)
GATESVILLE (October 28, 2013)—The Texas Department of Corrections is the largest water user in Gatesville with more than 8,200 inmates housed in six prison units.
The department has set up a command center to respond to the outage, which affects the Crain, Hilltop, Mountain View, Hughes, Woodman, and Murray units.
Inmates are being confined to housing areas and will be fed sack lunches until water pressure is restored, prison system spokesman Jason Clark said Monday.
Monday afternoon the Crain, Hilltop, and Mountain View units had somewater pressure, but the Hughes, Woodman, and Murray units had none.
The department is sending 20 water tankers and 40,000 water bottles to Gatesville and has rented portable toilets, he said.
GATESVILLE (October 30, 2013) Boil notices and a conservation order were lifted Wednesday in Gatesville, which came close to running out of water because of a power outage caused by a weekend lightning strike.
The boil notices were issued Tuesday after many homes, businesses and schools in the city and customers of six other systems the city serves were without water Monday because of the power failure at the city’s intake station at Lake Belton.
The notices affected residents who receive water from the Mountain Water Supply Corp., residents who live in the area of the Gatesville Civic Center and those who live around the Woodman, Murray, Hughes and Hilltop state prison units.
Lightning struck a utility pole Sunday evening near Morgan's Point and damaged the line the powers the pumps at the city’s intake station at Lake Belton, Oncor spokesman Willie Leos said.
He said the lightning strike actually "blew a hole" in the line that caused the outage.
Crews located the damaged portion of the power line late Monday afternoon and power was fully restored at 7:27 p.m. Monday he said.
By Tuesday morning reserve tanks were again full and all customers had water pressure.
Schools, the prison system, the hospital and area nursing homes, put contingency plans into effect because of the outage Monday and bottled water sales at local stores were brisk.
The city arranged to have a large generator shipped from Houston to provide temporary power to the station, fearing that repairs to the line, a portion of which runs beneath Lake Belton, could take several days.
The generator wasn’t needed and Mumby said Oncor has agreed to pay part of its cost.
He said the city learned a lesson from the outage and will soon purchase a generator of its own to ensure any problem in the future can be more quickly dealt with.
Gatesville provides water to about 20,000 people.