|Blakely Island Maintenance Commission, Inc.|
MINUTES OF APRIL 2, 2005 BIMC BOARD OF GOVENORS BOARD MEETING
The meeting was at Marc Droppert’s home on Blakely Island with the following participants:
Marc Droppert, President
John Madden, Vice President
Ron Griffin, Secretary
Cindy Zech, Treasurer
Ben Dole, Fire commissioner
Martha Mills Airports and Roads
Jim Davis Facilities manager
Russ Keyes Water project assistant
John Davidson Fire Truck project assistant
John Howieson, Water commissioner
The meeting was called to order at 2:00 PM by Marc Droppert
a. Burkhart water hookup
b. Ledfors letter
c. O’Neil letter regarding lots 22, 23
d. Lot 139 Olson right of first refusal - waived
e. Mark Smith e-mails to Marc
f. Roats e-mails to Marc
g. Weller letter regarding driveway gravel – approved
h. Kincaid building permit - conditionally approved
j. Preliminary Financial Statement for FY ending 5/31/2005
k. Proposed operating budget for FY starting 6/1/2005
l. Proposed Capital budget for FY starting 6/1/2005
m. President’s report
n. Fire report
o. Manager’s annual report
p. Water project reports
q. Nominating Committee report
The meeting was adjourned at 6:25 PM
Ron Griffin, BIMC Board of Governors Secretary
Facility Manager’s Report
April 5th, 2005
Water System Update
Many members are already aware that our domestic water system suffered problems beginning the evening of March 23rd. Margo and I had left for a week’s vacation on the 22nd. The water system and usage were all normal for this time of year. Terry Pence was in charge of our facilities in our absence. Water use thus far in March had been averaging about 6,000 gallons per day. Due to an early algae bloom at the lake, we had reduced the flow through the filter to increase efficiency. Terry had visually checked reservoir levels early in the day on Tuesday and observed them to be nearly full. At the average flow we had over 8 days of reserve. However, an unexpected/unintentional flow on private property consumed approximately 37,000 gallons of water in a period of only a few hours. At approximately 11:30 PM, Judy Tompkins observed little or no water pressure at her home. Judy knew we were gone but also knew that if the reservoirs were low, the yellow light would be flashing on our roof. She drove to our house and noted that the light was indeed flashing. She immediately notified Terry. He got to the plant in short order and began working the problem. Our system has an intrinsic flaw in that we must have water to process more water. This is a catch-22 situation that I have worked around for the past 12 years. That is, the reservoir levels low or dry combined with the filter plugged and needing a backwash, with no treated water available to facilitate the backwash. We have had low water level situations in the past. At times I have had to shut off water to part or all of the plat, in order to build up enough water in one reservoir to accomplish a needed backwash. To compound the problem, a leak had developed in the pump room. The leak occurred as a result of the service pump pumping a mixture of water and air for a time, as the reservoir was going dry. The resulting water hammer caused the pipe on the pressure side of the pump to break at just the right spot to spray water directly into the backwash pump motor. The water caused the motor to short-out. While we have spares for all of our continuous use pumps, we did not have a spare for this occasional-use application (eight minutes every six to eight hours of plant operation).
The result of what turned out to be an unforeseen, cascade failure was as follows: A small amount of untreated (unfiltered) water was pumped from the raw water reservoir to one of our domestic water reservoirs. This water was treated with a high dose of chlorine to disinfect it so that it could be used to backwash the filter. Soon after, it was found that the backwash pump motor was non-functional. Russ Keyes was on the island and he was able to locate a new motor in Auburn, transport it to the island and help Terry with the installation. I was being consulted by phone and the three of us worked out a plan to get the system back up and running. Unfortunately, during this process, a small amount of untreated water entered our distribution system. As a result, the Department of Health requires us to issue a “boil order” for our water system. While Terry and Russ were engaged in the pursuits previously described, Judy Tompkins printed and distributed boil notices to all public locations and to individual homes. There was very little or no water pressure in most of our system for about twelve hours. Residents were asked to use water on a very limited basis until the system was completely restored, about 24 hours later. The boil order will remain in effect until successful completion of ten bacteriological samples from our system. We are anticipating completing those tests next week.
Terry Pence and Russ Keyes worked non-stop on this problem for the better part of two days and nights, to restore water service to our members. Judy Tompkins printed and distributed the boil notices and helped stay in touch with me by phone, relaying messages back and forth. We owe these folks major Thank-Yous for serving the Blakely community.
This report would not be complete without a few comments on “what did we learn?” First, while Terry has a complete understanding of our day-to-day operations, the what-if scenarios, regarding some low water situations and emergencies have been covered only in verbal and written instructions. Terry now has “hands on experience” with what can only be described as a worse case situation. Second, we need additional training and better descriptions in our manuals that describe our distribution system valves so all operators have a clear understanding of how certain elements of the system can be completely isolated if the need arises. Third, we all must realize that we operate a small system. Small systems by nature do not have the buffer to accommodate very large flows over a short period of time. Even with plans in the works to increase our storage capacity, we will always have the potential for problems, when extremely high demands or large leaks tax our system.
Water Meter Installations
We have installed nearly 100 meters since the approval of this project last July. We have about a dozen installations remaining.
We have recently used the newly installed water meters to locate two significant leaks. In the first instance, we noticed increased use on the west side of the runway (47 homes). After noting that the use continued for more than one day I walked the area checking meters. Even though the leak was at the second to the last place to check, it took less than ½ hour to find and stop the leak. The problem was a toilet running resulting in a loss of several thousand gallons per day. When we retuned earlier this week, Margo noted that the water use on the South road (16 homes) had been increasing and looked very high considering the occupancy. I was busy with other aspects of the system so she checked the meters on the South road. She was able to locate the leak (about 3,500 gallons per day) within a few minutes. The service was shut off and the homeowner was notified. In both of these cases it would have previously taken many hours or perhaps days locate the problem. There will be many more similar stories. It would seem, with these types of results, the value of water meters will be more and more difficult to dispute.
New Domestic Water Line
The contractor has rectified the previously reported problems on this new water line. They replaced over 100 joints and the line was successfully tested at over 150% of working pressure on March 18th. We disinfected the new line on March 19-20th and it was placed in service on March 21st. Work on the pipeline and restoration of the excavation routes was completed by March 24th.
Irrigation Distribution Line Extension
The contractor located and repaired two leaks in this new pipeline last month. The new line is in service and ready for the upcoming season.
Facilities Manager Vacation
We have used 5 days of vacation since February 1st. As of April 1st we will have 17 2/3rds days of vacation accrued.