The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

July 23, 2012

Local water providers asking customers to voluntarily reduce usage

Missouri American Water Co. is asking its customers in the Joplin area to voluntarily conserve water until further notice because of the drought. Jasper County Public Water Supply District No. 1, which serves an area west of Joplin and Carl Junction, also is asking its customers to conserve.

“This is somewhat of an unusual scenario for us,” said Christie Barnhart, spokeswoman for Missouri American. “Usually, our concerns revolve around demand. This is strictly a case of the source being limited.”

The drought is putting stress on the company’s Shoal Creek reservoir, which is the impoundment created by the dam at Grand Falls. The company augments that source with water from a field of deep-aquifer wells.

“We are having no problems with our wells, but if we keep drawing water from them, we could have a long-term impact on the aquifer,” Barnhart said. “It’s a matter of which source is being affected the quickest by the drought. In this case, it’s our reservoir.”

Shoal Creek is down to a flow of 48 cubic feet per second, according to the U.S. Geological Survey monitoring station south of Joplin. Normal flow this time of year is around 400 cubic feet per second.

“Missouri American Water is taking these proactive actions today to avoid taking additional measures to restrict water usage,” Matthew Barnhart, the company’s operations manager, said Monday. “If these conditions persist, there is a chance the restrictions may become mandatory.”

Missouri American also is asking residents to follow a defined outdoor watering schedule. People with odd-numbered street addresses should water only on odd calendar days, and those with even-numbered addresses should water only on even calendar days. The company also is asking residents to avoid watering during the peak demand hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Jasper County Public Water Supply District No. 1 uses four wells to pull water from the ground to meet demand.

Ron Ross, chief water operator for the district, said Monday: “The water level is dropping, and we need people to conserve voluntarily. If we can do that, we won’t have to do something that is mandatory.

“It’s hot and dry, and there’s a lot of yard irrigating going on. People need to refrain from watering their yards. They need to water their bushes and trees, but the grass will go dormant. It will come back next year.”

Ross said the pumps in the district’s four wells normally have 120 to 180 feet of water over them.

“We have one well down to 80 feet and another down to 50 feet,” he said. “If they keep pumping the way they are pumping, we are going to be in trouble.”

The district has a water hookup with Missouri American in the event demand should exceed the district’s capacity to deliver.

Carl Junction City Administrator Steve Lawver said the city is monitoring the water situation closely.

While there has been no mandate, Lawver said he would like residents to be conscientious.

“We’ve never had to do it (mandatory restrictions), and I hate to think that we will,” he said. “The worst-case scenario is to start asking people not to wash vehicles, don’t water the lawn, don’t water flowers. Right now, all of that stuff is just suggestions, just to be aware of how much you’re using.”

In Webb City, Mayor John Biggs said water levels in the city’s deep wells are “still in good shape” and the water towers are full.

“Everything seems to be fine,” he said. “But if the weather continues, we’re going to have to do something about it.”

No water restrictions have been imposed in Neosho, Seneca or Carthage.

Text Only
Local News
  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • Cherokee County Commission accepts general counsel's resignation

    Kevin Cure, who has served as general counsel for the Cherokee County Commission since 2005, submitted a handwritten resignation to the board on Monday in the aftermath of a landfill controversy.

    July 22, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Parents can get help with school supplies

    I don’t know much about demographics other than the fact that I no longer belong to a “targeted demographic.” When I was younger, I was bombarded by commercials and ads from companies that were trying to sell me things that I not only needed but wanted.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jasper County Commission reviews traffic plans

    The Jasper County Commission will hold public hearings today and Thursday on a number of traffic changes proposed in the county. No one spoke when the first hearing was held Tuesday as part of the regular commission meeting, according to Jim Honey, Eastern District associate commissioner.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Neosho school board hires company to manage substitutes

    Citing its hopes of shifting health care costs and utilizing more time from retired teachers, the Neosho Board of Education granted a contract Monday to a temporary employee company to manage its substitute teacher program.

    July 22, 2014

  • Main Street TIF district study to begin

    A measure that allows the city to charge its $15,000 in administrative costs for studying a proposal to create a tax increment financing district on South Main Street was approved Monday by the Joplin City Council.

    July 21, 2014

  • Carthage man pleads guilty in sexual abuse case

    A Carthage man pleaded guilty Monday to sexual abuse of a 12-year-old girl in a plea agreement that would cap the length of his prison term at no more than 15 years.

    July 21, 2014

Must Read


A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter