Hyde Park residents frustrated to learn they could run out of water

Jul 1, 2021, 6:53 AM | Updated: 8:16 am
hyde park mayor addresses water supply...
Hyde Park Mayor Charles Wheelers explains the water supply concerns to KSL TV's Jed Boal. Photo: KSL NewsRadio

HYDE PARK, Utah — A Cache County city is calling on its residents to reduce their outdoor water usage by 50%, or else its water supply may run out by Saturday — but many Hyde Park residents want to know why they didn’t learn about the situation much sooner.

Notice went out on Tuesday

Hyde Park Mayor Charles Wheeler warned residents in a statement Tuesday, explaining the city is “unable to provide the amount of water we are consuming,” attributing the shortage to the ongoing drought. Wheeler says the majority of the city’s water goes to outdoor irrigation and watering; those needs use it faster than the tanks replenish

The city primarily uses canal water for irrigation. However, about a third of residents use culinary water to water outside because they live above the canal that provides the secondary water, Wheeler told KSL NewsRadio Tuesday

Wheeler says the responsibility to conserve water falls on Hyde Park residents. He said if each resident cut outdoor watering by 50% effective immediately, the tanks would replenish fast enough to keep up with demand. 

“As long as less [water] is being used than coming in, we will be fine. The difference is reducing the amount of water going on lawns,” said the mayor. 

He says the reduction will ensure there is enough water for everyday needs, but most importantly for fire protection. 

Water supply concerns take city by surprise 

Many Hyde Park residents expressed their concerns and frustrations with the water notice on a neighborhood Facebook group.

On the page, residents questioned why Wheeler didn’t suggest that they cut back 100% of outdoor irrigation immediately. Would a 50% reduction be enough, some wondered. A slew of people asked why they weren’t made aware of the water shortage sooner until it was posted on social media.

“I haven’t gotten any info on this. If we’re going to run out of water by Saturday, don’t you think we should be cutting our outdoor watering by 100%?” asked one resident. 

Data on the Hyde Park water supply

Wheeler said he didn’t want to risk residents not listening.

“We don’t want to raise the wolf syndrome, where you call wolf every five minutes,” explained Wheeler. “Pretty soon, nobody listens to you.” 

Instead, Wheeler waited for the data to show the city needed to take action. That moment came for city leaders when water levels reached eight feet at one point. 

“The computer modeling told us: people are using it too quickly, too fast, too much that you will not have any water in the system as of the Saturday, the third of July.”

Residents frustrated over lack of info

Hyde Park said they sent out a notice to residents via phone or text, but not everyone got it. Although, some people who did get the alert thought it was a scam, citing a lack of information from the city. 

The reason why the entire Hyde Park community didn’t get the memo, according to Wheeler, is because the local government doesn’t have access to everyone’s contact information. 

“They don’t share cell phone numbers. They don’t share email addresses with cities,” Wheeler said. “So the question then becomes how can the city reach out to you and contact you? And we find it very, very difficult.”

However, Wheeler says the notice to Hyde Park seems to be working. “We went from a dire situation to an acceptable situation, one where we have water for all the needs that they have in the house and fire protection,” Wheeler said. 

But the city isn’t totally out of the woods. Wheeler said water tanks go down during the day when people are using the resource the most and tend to recover at night. 

The city said the advisory to reduce outside watering will continue throughout the remainder of the summer. 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories


A man died early Wednesday morning when he was hit by a driver going the the wrong way on I-15 near...
Amie Schaeffer

One person killed in wrong-way collision on I-15 near Beck Street

According to Sgt. Cameron Roden with the Utah Highway Patrol, a vehicle entered the interstate going southbound in northbound lanes when it hit another car. 
9 hours ago
Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks at an annual leadership meeting of the Republican Jewish ...
Kate Sullivan and Kylie Atwood, CNN

Nikki Haley expected to announce presidential run in Charleston on Feb. 15

Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley is expected to announce her intention to run for President in a few weeks.
9 hours ago
A bill that could make its way to the Utah legislature in the 2023 session would require school dis...
Mark Jones

Potential redesign of new Utah State Flag emphasizes Native American tribes

Sen. Dan McCay (R-Riverton) is sponsoring a bill that would call for a slight redesign of the new Utah State Flag.
1 day ago
snow shovel driveway dialysis...
Mark Jones

Cold weather causes late start for Logan City School District Wednesday

The Logan City School District and the Cache County School District will be on two-hour late starts on Wednesday, Feb. 1.
1 day ago
A pair of bills in the Utah Legislature address if and how Utah teens could use social media. One w...
Lindsay Aerts

Bill would require parental permission for Utah teens to use social media

Two bills circulating at the 2023 Utah Legislative Session involve social media, parents, and their teens. A group of tech CEOs opposes one.
1 day ago
Centerville Police department...
Elizabeth Weiler

Centerville Police restate “guardian over warrior” mantra

"Our role in Centerville and in policing in general ... is as a Guardian instead of the Warrior" Sgt. Dingman said. "The relationships we build with the community and how they are treated by our officers is still a priority."
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
Hyde Park residents frustrated to learn they could run out of water