The results of a 48-hour well test have Salt Lake County Water Conservancy District officials believing they are not causing problems for well owners near 45th South and Seventh East.
The district agreed to temporarily stop pumping its well on 45th South between Second and Third East after homeowners complained the large municipal well was drawing the water table below the reach of their small, residential wells.A group of about 40 residents complained Wednesday to State Engineer Bob Morgan, saying the water level in their wells dropped after the conservancy district began pumping the well near their homes.
Morgan said a total of five municipal wells pump from the artesian basin where the troubled homes are located.
The group was skeptical the conservancy district would shut down its well for a 48-hour test without the persuasion of a court injunction, but the district agreed after a 2 p.m. meeting Wednesday. The pump was shut down one hour later.
Some members of the group were riled again late that evening when they thought the district had re-started the pump. About midnight Wednesday, some residents heard a noise at the pump house and thought the district had abandoned the test and turned the well back on.
They called Mel Johnson, the district's field coordinator, at home and he met them at the well. "They thought we had gone against what we said we were going to do and were upset about it," Johnson said. As it turned out, a fan in the pump house was making the noise. "When they found out, they were apologetic about it."
The district measured the water table level at a residential well at 4555 S. 785 East. At the beginning of the 3 p.m. test, the water was 28 feet 61/2 inches below the top of the well pipe. By noon Thursday, the water had risen to 26 feet 101/4 inches, but by Friday at 12:26 p.m., the water measured at an even 28 feet - six inches higher than when the test began.
"We don't feel that the well is impacting their water levels to the extent they think it is," Johnson said. "Whether its impacting it at all is still a question. We want to know as much as they do."
Johnson said the well pumps would stay off for a while longer to make the test results more conclusive.