MOSES LAKE – Water usage in Moses Lake dropped by nearly two million gallons in the 24 hours following a city-wide water rationing.

“The City of Moses Lake would like to thank the residents, businesses, and industrial customers for heeding the recent water rationing recommendation,” officials stated.

On Monday, the day the water rationing measure was announced, the city’s Water Division showed Moses Lake’s water usage was at about 16.8 million gallons.

“With your conservation efforts, within 24 hours, we used approximately 14.9 million gallons of water,” officials stated. “Thanks to the public’s cooperation with the recommendation of watering every other day, driving water quality, treatment capacity, and fire protection systems were never compromised.”

As of Thursday morning, the water rationing remains in effect. City officials are hoping to lift the recommendation “soon.”

Under the water rationing recommendation:

  • Addresses with odd numbers are allowed to irrigate, which includes watering lawns, and wash vehicles on odd numbered days.
  • Addresses with even numbers can irrigate and wash vehicles on even numbered days. 
  • Any property with irrigation meters two inches and larger are restricted to irrigate from midnight to 8:00 a.m. or on a schedule approved by the city. This restriction does not pertain to most residential housing.

The rationing recommendations are in place for anyone on the city's water system.

City Parks and Recreation Director Spencer Grigg said the city has temporarily reduced its watering cycle, up to 70 percent in some areas.

City Manager John Williams said the rationing is voluntary and the city is not at an enforcement stage where public works could shut off residents' water if they are not following the recommendations.

The city is required to keep reservoir levels above the fire protection standard, which can vary by reservoir.

Several water zones have hit or are near the low level alarm, which Williams said requires monitoring to ensure levels do not drop below the fire protection minimum. If reservoir levels were to drop below that minimum, more severe water restrictions would need to be implemented, according to Williams.