Finally! A thread I can offer relevant input to!
I also work in the water distribution field. EOCP certified in good standing, distribution level 2 and wastewater level 2. Also a red seal sprinkler fitter of 15 years with cross connection control certification. I have spent a lot of my working life dealing with water, distribution methods and above all water safety.
Walkerton, as tragic as it was was a clear cut case of human error. Laziness to be precise. Lack of following an instituted testing program that would have easily prevented the tragedy. If any positive came from it, it has significantly enhanced policy and certification for all other municipalities and utility vendors, helping ensure a safe, consumable product reaches your tap.
I feel the Nestle deal is more of a sore point from the financial perspective. They should just be paying more money for the product they are exploiting. Bottling water from an aquifer at this point, has very little to do with impact on our treated water system and the restrictions we are dealing with due to the current drought.
Lawns, clean cars and pools are straight vanity and leisure elements that can be addressed outside of using treated water. Pools and hot tubs, even when filled from treated sources still require chemical additions to bring up to ideal standards. That being said, I believe a good idea for municipalities to start allowing grey water reclamation systems in single family homes. Vancouver Convention Center and the Olympic Village development are using with success. Why not allow on smaller scales in residential homes? Perhaps a rebate system such as BC Hydro did with home insulation to cut down on utility use. Be awfully nice to be able to use filtered laundry and bath water to keep the lawn green and car clean. I would love to see this explored for a "proactive" rather than "reactive" standpoint.
A few problems with dry line hydrants. Untreated, static water in lines will harbor all types of organic growth that will eventually plug the system. Empty dry pipes will cause delay to the end user (when time is critical) and also blasting water at high gpm and pressure through empty pipe, no matter how well the system is seismically restrained will lead to system failure eventually.
Just a few points on the subject so far.
There seems to be a few "industry" people in on this thread. Couple that with a lot of intelligent people hanging around here we could get some relevant thoughts out! Perhaps instead of mud slinging, what are other water saving ideas people have? With our population growth rate and current environmental path, its likely this will be an issue we will deal with for some time to come…..