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CEDAR URGED TO CONSERVE WATER

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Local officials are asking the people of Cedar City to use water conservatively and to refrain from watering lawns and gardens following Friday afternoon's fire, which knocked out the city's largest well.

Mayor Robert Linford said Saturday that the local state of emergency regarding the city's water supply will continue until Wednesday.Wheeler Machinery had a mechanic on hand Friday night in an attempt to assess the damage to the diesel engine that pumps water from the Quichapa well, west of the city. The parts needed to repair the well should arrive Monday, according to Linford.

He said that if parts are not in stock in Salt Lake City, another emergency engine could be on hand within 36 hours. "I'm confident that we will have the well on line again by Wednesday. And I'm happy to report that people are being cooperative about the use of water.

"I did take a drive around town early this morning when a lot of watering takes place and didn't have to stop and talk to anyone," Linford said.

Only one car wash was asked to stop washing vehicles about 2 p.m., and they claimed they hadn't heard about the problem.

The cause of Friday's fire is still undetermined. But Linford said it likely started in the exhaust system of the well.

The fire did an estimated $130,000 damage to the concrete block structure above the well and to the diesel engine.

Councilman Dennis Johnson said the city is operating on two of its five wells since the fire, and water capacity is about 30 percent of normal. Two other wells already were broken before Friday's fire.