The city of Benicia said Sunday evening it's requiring "all residents and businesses to immediately conserve water" by at least 30%, due to a pipeline break at the Benicia Water Treatment Plant.
The city said in a news release the water treatment plant suffered a break in a pipeline overnight, and workers are trying to locate the break and repair it as soon as possible. It also said the water for use in homes and businesses is safe for use while repairs are being made.
The city said the 30% "mandatory requirement" means, for homes, no outdoor water use (including car washing and landscape watering). For businesses, it means cutting water usage wherever possible.
Valero Benicia Refinery uses untreated water in their processes and is unaffected by the mandate, according to the city.
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Benicia Mayor Steve Young told NBC Bay Area that the problem started Saturday night or early Sunday morning, after a water line burst and inundated the plant's bottom floor.
“We're not going to let the city run out of water; if necessary we will bring water from outside sources,” he said.
As for the water coming into the residents’ homes and businesses now, Young said it’s safe to continue to use even during repairs.
“We're confident that we're going to get this fixed without too much trouble. But you never know until you dig in and see how big the problem is,” he said.
The city is expected to give an update on the situation first thing Monday morning.
The conservation may last over the next several days. City staff will provide updates on the city's social media sites and the city website. Residents can also check for information by calling a recorded message at (707) 746-4704.