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With dam fixed, Lake 16 supplying Sultan with water again

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By Alejandro Dominguez
Herald Writer
SULTAN -- People are getting their water again from Lake 16, the city's reservoir, which had been dry for about seven months.
The dam repair officially ended in late October, and water started flowing from the man-made reservoir into to Sultan last week, city administrator Deborah Knight said.
In April, city workers found the dam reservoir had emptied because of a hole beneath its foundation. Sultan then started relying on water from Everett, which has an agreement to provide water to Sultan if needed.
"Because we had water from Everett, it wasn't a problem," Knight said.
The cause of the hole is unknown. Crews from Woodinville-based Harbor Pacific Contractors excavated underneath the dam and filled the hole by using large rocks. The gap between the rocks was covered with a substance similar to cement, Knight said.
During the work, old valves and pipes were replaced, concrete was repaired and a vault was built downstream to protect the installed valves and to provide safe access for public works crews.
The estimated $325,000 project was paid mostly by a state grant. The city paid about $83,000 of the project's cost, Knight said.
Sultan gets 95 percent of its water from Lake 16. On a daily average, 4,918 people use about 538,000 gallons of water.
The reservoir is located two miles from the city's water treatment plant and is a 45-minute drive from downtown.
The dam was built in 1949 and it dried up once before seven years ago. That time, the repair only took about an hour.
Alejandro Dominguez: 425-339-3422;
Story tags » SultanWater Supplies

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