The Camptonville Water System serves the community of Camptonville, a historic foothills community with a population of 188 and a mean household income of $27,031. The Camptonville Water System did not meet State CRC Title 22 water treatment standards, due to a combination of operational and structural deficiencies. The purpose of this project was threefold:
- To ensure the reliable production of safe drinking water
- To improve the water storage capabilities of the water system; and
- To conserve water and protect the watershed.
Without this project:
- The system would continue to needlessly draw up to 3,000,000 gallons per year from a surface water source and return about the same amount of water, now treated with chlorine, to the same watershed.
- The system would also continue to produce water that would be impossible to identify as meeting drinking water standards or not.
- The community would continue to suffer the risk of inadequate drinking water in drought conditions and to suffer the risk of no reserve fire water supply in normal conditions.
The following steps were proposed:
- Build a new 220,000-gallon bolted steel treated water storage tank to supplement the existing 64,000 tank. The new tank will include separate inlet and outlet plumbing, NSF approved coatings, interior and exterior ladders with fall protection, sampling port, screened roof vent, roof mounted access hatch, dual shell man-ways, level sensing devices for monitoring tank levels and tank overflow and drain lines.
- Install SCADA process instrumentation, data logging, warning systems and improved flow controls and secondarily to increase the size of the existing slow-sand filter.
- Increase the slow-sand filter area from 996 to 1072 square feet by converting an existing raw water-settling gallery inside the current structure to additional slow-sand filter, increasing the maximum daily flow from 93,600 gallons to 100,339 gallons per day.
- Installation of new instrumentation and controls including an upstream turbidity meter with automatic flow-shutoff for infrequent high turbidity stream-flows, new float valves to the upstream side of all six filter cells, new flow meters, throttling valves and manometers to the downstream side of all filter cells, and new turbidity meters and chlorine residual analyzers within the plant.
- Install services to record and log plant flows, temperature, ph, turbidity and residual chlorine along with associated online warning systems to alert remote operators of pending emergencies will be provided to facilitate water treatment rules compliance.
The project also has one additional component:
- Fire-hazard reduction around all treatment plant structures.
Current Status (March 2017)
Project is complete as follows:
- New tank built and operating.
- All filter modifications are complete.
- Slow sand filter area expansion complete.
- Float valves, flow meters, throttling valves, manometers, turbidity meters and chlorine residual analyzers installed.
- Fire hazard reduction complete.
- SCADA system and other remaining instrumentation installation complete.
Phase 1 enabled the USDA to fully fund Phase 2 of the project. This work includes:
- A new well
- New meters in the distribution system and
- Secondary treatment equipment (iron and manganese filters)
Project Results: Prior to this project, the only way that CCSD could produce reliably disinfected water was to over-produce relative to consumption, thus insuring a very small detention tank would remain full enough to properly disinfect the water (disinfection takes time). This necessary over-production led to daily storage over-flows where treated creek water was returned to the watershed. Clearly, the lack of storage and control was more detrimental to the watershed than to the human residents. With that in mind, the benefits created by the project include the following:
- This project allows the disadvantaged community of Camptonville to continue to produce it’s own treated drinking water. Let’s put “disadvantaged” in context. Water rates in the community are consistent with water rates around California; everyone pays. Annual revenues from these rates are in rough numbers about $50,000. This amount of public fund is only sufficient to pay for operating and maintenance expenses, without permanent office staff or any full time employees. (The system operates on about 11 man-hours per week.) A Capital Improvement Study prepared by the California Rural Water Association for Camptonville determined that the annual reserve contribution needed to replace existing and new assets is about $60,000 per year. The community cannot financially support this level of investment and is clearly disadvantaged.
- This project provided the funds to complete Phase I improvements and provided the leverage needed to fund Phase II improvements: Without this influx of State funds serving as match funds, the district would not have qualified for Phase II federal funding. Where Phase I concentrates on water quality, Phase II funding is focused on improving water supply, essential investment as drought overwhelms California.
- This project enabled the district to bring it’s circa 1990’s treatment facility into compliance with the ever-evolving Federal and State drinking water standards, most particularly with the inclusion of automatic control systems that permits the department to continue to work within the financial limits of the water department noted above, that is, limited daily operator attendance.
- This project provides this community with a minimum of 150,000 gallons of fire protection and suppression waters. In context, Camptonville lies on a ridge in the Sierra Nevada foothills, mid-mountain. Calfire rates the entire 50 square mile Camptonville District as a “Severe Fire Danger” zone, like much of the Sierra Nevada foothills. The region has over 150 years of very large wild fire history, with the town of Camptonville burning to the ground twice in this period. The town itself is home to two USFS engine companies as well as the original Hobard “Hot Shot” crew. It’s a serious and very real risk that never diminishes. The 150,000 gallons of fire protection water is the best insurance the town carries as California moves into the current drought regime.
- This project ends the practice of over-producing and wasting water. The storage facility provides for daily surges of use including fire protection needs without jeopardizing water quality. The automated controls give operators the ability to monitor the plant remotely, minimizing operating expenses without sacrificing water quality. The combination of storage and controls ends the need to produce more water than is needed and absolutely prevents the discharge of treated water back into the watershed, both of which preserve the health of Campbell’s Gulch, the creek that makes life in this town possible.
- And finally, in early 2017, without the new storage tank built as a result of this project, the community of Camptonville would have been without water for two weeks due to storm damage to the surface water intake of their system. The new tank provided water to the community during this emergency.
Camptonville Community Service District
Mark Jokerst, Water Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org, 530-288-9320
Measurable Physical Benefits
Water Supply , Water Quality