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Water Woes Weighing On Marin County Community Of Inverness

INVERNESS, Marin County (KPIX 5) -- As if pandemic, social unrest, and economic uncertainty weren't enough, the community of Inverness is facing a water shortage.

The unincorporated census-designated place doesn't have reservoirs. It doesn't have wells, nor is it connected to a nearby water district. They only have small streams and rainfall, said Wade Holland, Inverness Public Utilities District Customer Services Manager.

"In the middle of May, we only had 23 inches for the year and our normal is 37," said Holland. "We began to realize there was a problem but, there was still hope of getting more rain. We didn't."

Customers are being asked to conserve. The Osprey Peak Bed and Breakfast is closed but owners David Herbst and Nancy Beck are already rationing. Sink and bathwater is saved for the garden.

One day, nothing came out of the faucet.

"We turned on the faucet a couple of times and no water," said Beck.

"Yeah, because they would be drawing water from the fire hydrant down at the bottom of the hill here," said Herbst.

Construction crews, unaware of the low water supply, were quickly stopped.

The low supply has Inverness Volunteer Fire Dept. Chief Jim Fox's attention. "Obviously, we want to keep enough water in the tanks to be able to fight any fires," said Fox. "We're lucky that we don't have high-rises or too many large buildings."

The water district says automated sprinkler systems of weekend homeowners is a concern but, Holland is confident folks are getting the message to be very careful with water.

Holland said the town won't run out of water. "We will keep tightening the screws to the customers in terms of more and more severe restrictions of usage."


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