December 21, 2017 Thomas Fire Update
THOMAS FIRE INCIDENT: WATER CONSERVATION CRITICAL AS THE COMMUNITY CLEANS UP
(Santa Barbara, California, December 21, 2017) Montecito Water District, which serves the communities of Montecito and Summerland, extends its deepest sympathies to all those who have been displaced and / or experienced loss during this very challenging time. District staff have been on the job throughout the Thomas Fire incident, performing all manner of tasks to ensure that an uninterrupted water supply is in place to protect the community to the fullest extent possible. Through actions such as anticipating needs, repairing infrastructure, maintaining close communication with firefighting and emergency response personnel and more, water supply has remained consistent through the duration of the fire. The District has been and will continue to be dedicated to serving the water needs of the firefighters and the community.
The District is well aware that for its customers and the community at large, tracking the sometimes fast, sometimes slow progression of the massive Thomas Fire has been excruciating. Yet due to monitoring and early warning, the District was fortunate to have had adequate time to safely evacuate District staff from the back country, safeguard the treatment plant, and continuously provide a reliable supply.
As thousands of evacuated residents return home and begin cleanup from the incident, water conservation remains a top priority. Resources for information on ash cleanup can be found here: countyofsb.org/cleanup.sbc and www.ourair.org/ash-cleanup/.
While Jameson Lake has been an invaluable resource in providing water to the firefighting effort, the Thomas Fire caused significant destruction in its passage through the Jameson Lake watershed. While Montecito Water District reports that there are no water quality concerns at this time, the public may anticipate receiving future information with regards to water supply and quality. Conservation continues to be extremely important moving forward as the District and community cleans up, continues to wait for rain, and the District prepares to deal with debris flow if and / or when rain arrives.
Helicopter dips in at Jameson Lake
Photo credit: Osprey dips in for a fish at Jameson Lake, Alan Prichard, Dam Caretaker, Montecito Water District
Montecito Water District’s mission is to provide an adequate and reliable supply of high quality water to the residents of Montecito and Summerland, at the most reasonable cost. In carrying out this mission, the District places particular emphasis on providing outstanding customer service, conducting its operations in an environmentally sensitive manner, and working cooperatively with other agencies. For additional information visit www.montecitowater.com, like Montecito Water District on Facebook, and follow on twitter @MontecitoWater.