Maryland town looks to water tankers for relief

| 8/28/2002

Water tankers may start filing into Maryland's second-largest city to help replenish the drought-stricken town's water supply. The mayor of Frederick has pledged to provide water to residents no matter what happens.

With little more than a month's supply of water in Frederick's two reservoirs and no rain forecast, city officials are considering a worst-case scenario plan to truck in as much as 4 million gallons of water a day.

Tentative plans call for up to 20 water tankers to arrive each hour, 24 hours a day, at the cost of a "small fortune." The city's Drought Coordination Team is working out details of the plan.

Water restrictions imposed in early April to cut water use by 10 percent has provided little benefit as significant rainfall has been few and far between. Officials are considering more steps to cut water use.

Significant rainfall is needed by late September to avoid a water emergency. The 90-day forecast outlook doesn't provide much hope. Heavy precipitation in the area isn't expected until winter.