Searching for more water

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COLBERT, Okla. -- Officials in Colbert say they're making improvements to the water system. They are hoping to fix the problems now, especially with big projects in store for the city.

The worn water pumps are not a new problem in Colbert, but city leaders hope these issues are fixed soon. A new truck stop prepares to roll into town.

City officials say they're replacing three of the eight pumps, as the main tank is about half full. An already strained system is about to service another addition.

"These things have been in the ground for a while, and like anything, they wear out," said Jerry Harrell, a consultant for the city’s water department.

Colbert leaders are meeting with contractors to build a Love’s Comfort Store. The truck stop is to have parking spots for 100 trucks at a time. The city plans to provide the utilities by installing water and sewer lines out to the property off Leavenworth Trail.

"It's going to be a good tax income for the city of Colbert, plus the fact that there will be two new restaurants, 24 hour restaurants that will go in which will be good for our people here," said Dick Rarrick, the town administrator.

Workers hope to dig two more wells to accommodate the Love’s. A geologist found an area north of town that could be a spot for a new well. Another property in town could be the second site. Harrell says they may have to install a new booster pump to keep the water pressure at acceptable levels. State officials may require the city to install a new pump station altogether, to monitor Ph levels and chlorination.

They’re still collecting bids to determine a cost for the project. Before they dig for the expansion, they're working to repair pumps in the existing wells.

"We're trying to stay a step ahead of everything because we do have this plan and we're looking at a place north of town that the geologists are telling it's our best shot for water," Harrell said.

City officials say once they lay the utility lines the Love’s contractor can begin construction. The truck stop is expected to open this January.

As for the current pumps, they installed one today and hope to receive two more tomorrow. The construction shouldn't affect the quality of the water, but the city asks you conserve anyway.

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