Town water limited

> Drought leads to restrictions for homeowners, businesses

MILFORD – Homeown­ers and businesses are being asked to limit their use of water during what is being described as a moderate drought.

Right now it’s voluntary, said Dave Boucher, town water utilities director.

Milford receives back­up water supplies from Pennichuck Water Works, but on Saturday, Pen­nichuck had a problem with a pump. That meant the town didn’t have the Pennichuck option on a day when there was heavy water use.

"Rather than have tanks with not enough water for fires," Boucher said, the town asked that people conserve water. "We had to make a judg­ment call."

As of Monday, Penni­chuck’s pump was still being repaired, he said.

Use of Pennichuck wa­ter varies, and the com­pany provided about 6 percent of Milford’s water last year to supplement water from the town’s two wells.

A notice was posted on the town’s website, and residents have been call­ing the water utilities department and asking if they can fill their kiddie pools or water their veg­etable gardens.

"We tell them they can – just use common sense," Boucher said.

If water problems con­tinue, he said, there could be an odd-even system, as there is in Merrimack.

Merrimack Village Wa­ter Works started an odd-even ban on outdoor water use Monday, with the rea­son posted on its website:

"As a result of contin­ued heavy water con­sumption, extremely high temperatures and lack of precipitation, the MVD is implementing this restric­tion for the safety of the water supply and overall fire protection."

On the New Hampshire Department of Environ­mental Services’ website, there is a map showing areas of the state where there are water restric­tions. Nearly all are in Hillsborough and Rock­ingham counties.

In May, the rain total for Nashua recorded at Pen­nichuck Water Works was 1.68 inches, a deficit of 2.39 inches, according to Tele­graph weather columnist Doug Webster. So far, 2016 has been dry, he wrote, with a total of 13.72 inches, behind by 5.97 inches.