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Sun, March 24

Ash Fork taps new, second well – after years of work<BR>Opens door for growth in area, official says

ASH FORK – Nearly 40 residents of Ash Fork gathered on Thursday morning to witness a ribbon-cutting ceremony honoring the installation of the community's second well.

The additional water source will provide back-up service at 150 gallons per minute for Ash Fork Water Service's customers, said Lewis Hume, the water company's manager.

The four-year project began in 2000 after Ash Fork experienced several water shortages.

Pump and motor breakdowns in the community's single existing well were responsible for the community's water shortfall, according to Hume.

Consequently, Ash Fork residents who haul water to their homes were stuck without water, Hume said.

"That brought the need for the (well) project to the forefront even more," he added.

In its decision to take action, the water company applied and received grant money from the U.S. Agricultural Department's Rural Utility Service program to bring a second water source on-line.

The installation of a second well in Ash Fork marks a historical milestone for the community.

Until 1976, trains were used to haul in all of the water that Ash Fork residents used. That year, the Ash Fork Water Company finished construction on the community's first well, which provided clean drinking water at a rate of 30 gallons per minute.

Later, the company added another storage water tank and improved the well's distribution rate.

Now, with an additional well supplying water to the community's estimated 2,500 customers, Ash Fork can continue to expand in population without worrying about water shortages, Hume explained.

"I feel it was a big day for the area," he said.

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