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Water restrictions in effect in Rogue Valley

The Medford Water Commission has instituted emergency restrictions to help preserve water for firefighting operations.

With the combination of firefighters attacking the fires in Jackson County and record hot weather, water demand has spiked to nearly the total system production capacity of both the commission’s sources — Big Butte Springs and the Rogue River.

All watering is prohibited for lawn and turf, gardens and ornamental plants.

All other nonessential water use is prohibited, including ornamental fountains that use potable drinking water, car washing except at facilities that recycle water, all non-emergency hydrant use and water main flushing, dust control except at construction sites and washing of sidewalks, streets, decks and driveways except as needed to maintain public health and safety.

Washing buildings and filling or adding water to landscape ponds and public or private swimming pools is also banned.

The prohibitions apply to water customers in Medford, Central Point, Eagle Point, Phoenix, Talent, Jacksonville and White City.

The mandatory restrictions will remain in place until demand levels come down, the system can keep pace and reservoirs can remain full. Failure to comply may result in substantial rate surcharges and/or fines, the commission said.

For more information, see medfordwater.org or call the customer service department at 541-774-2430 during business hours.

For an after-hours emergency, call 541-779-7611.

Nonessential water use like lawn sprinkling is banned in the Medford area to save water for firefighters. File photo