NEW ORLEANS WATER PLANT
The construction of the New Orleans, La., water works was commenced in 1905 and the plant went into operation in 1908. The Mississippi river is the source of supply, the intake being at the upper end of the city. The system of purification is sedimentation, coagulation, filtration. The distribution system consists of 4-inch pipes to 48-inch mains. There are 574 miles of pipes and mains. There are 5,077 valves and 5,303 hydrants. The capacity of the pumping systems, including Algiers, is 100,000,000 gallons; the daily capacity of the filters is 63,000,000. and the pres, ent daily consumption is 20,000,000 gallons. The cost of the system to date, according to the twenty-eighth annual report of the Sewerage and Water Board, dated December 31. 1913, is $8,967,240.08. The main pumping station is equipped with three 40,000,000 gallon low lift centrifugal pumps, one 20,000,000 gallon low lift centrifugal pump, four 23,000,000 gallon high lift pumping engines, two 150 K. W. electric generators and six 400 H. P. water tube boilers, including superheaters, economizers and Roney stokers. The filter gallery has ten rapid American sand filters. The present average pressure direct is 60 pounds. Reports are issued in July and December ot each year. The former contains a synopsis of work for the preceding six months; the latter the full record of the year’s work. The membership of the Sewerage and Water Board is as follows: Hon. Martin Behrman. Mayor; A. G. Ricks, Commissioner of Public Finances; W. B. Thompson. Commissioner oi Public Utilities; E. E. Lafaye, Commissioner of Public Property; K. M. Walmsley, President of Board of Liquidation; Chas. J. Theard. Member of the Hoard of Liquidation; Chas. A. Kaufman, Jos. Voegtle, Jno. T. Pender, Dr. E. J. Graner, Jos. W. Lennox. C. H. Ellis, B. C. Casanas. The report states that a reduction of approximately 25 per cent, of the service charges was put into effect January 1st, 1913, and arc as follows: On each 5/8-inch meter, $0.75 per quarter; on each 3/4-inch meter, $0.90 per quarter; on each 1-inch meter. $1.20 per quarter; on each 1 1/2-inch meter, $1.80 per quarter; on each 2-inch meter, $3.00 per quarter; on each 3-inch meter, $4.50 per quarter; on each 4-inch meter, $6.00 per quarter; on each 6-inch meter, $10.50 per quarter; on each 8-inch meter, $18.00 per quarter. The expectation that this reduction of service charges would reduce materially! the rates paid by small consumers has been realized, and the following table shows approximately the annual rates paid by water consumers of the city:
During 1913, 17-25 miles of water mains were laid, making the total of 146.66 now in use; 135 valves were installed, 199 hydrants were installed, 7,229 house connections were made, making a total of 41,037, serving approximately 55,000 premises. The report made by General Superintendent George G. Earl says that an analysis of water consumption for the years 1911, 1912 and 1913 included the following:
All water consumers, except a few sprinkler or sealed valve fire systems and such uses as have to be permitted front fire hydrants for street or public service corporation repair work, etc., are metered. The total water consumption of 1913, exclusive of about 300,000,000 gallons used to maintain a condensing water supply in the Old Basin Navigation Canal on account of Drainage Construction, was 7,017,000,000 gallons, or 945,000,000 more than in 1912, and the average number of premises served was approximately 11,000 more than in 1912. Because of the reduction in service charge made effective in January, 1913, the total revenue derived from the water works system was only $26,000 more than that of 1912, being $387,931.52, made up as follows:
From sale of water at regular meter rates, $262,343.38; from service charges, $113,441.42; water from fire hydrants, building, etc., $8,425.44; delinquent fees, $3,721.28; total revenue for 1913, $387,93152; plus 1-3 of service charge, $37,813.80; total if rates of 1912 had been held, $425,745.32; balance indicating growth of revenue at same rates, $62,693.72; briefly summarized, the year 1913. as compared with 1912, shows an increase in number of meters in use of about 20 per cent.; in number of premises served of about 28 per cent.; in water consumption of about 15 per cent.; in revenue based on same rates of about 17 per cent.; and in actual revenue of about 7 per cent. The consumption of the metered free consumers during 1913 was 418,000,000 gallons, or 1,145,000 gallons per day. representing an absorption of only about $175,000 of the city’s water works investment. The use and wastes of water through fire hydrants, however, is indicated to be over two and onehalf times as much as that of the metered free consumers, and observation indicates that a very large proportion of such uses could be avoided. Water discharged freely through an open hydrant loses its pressure instantly and escapes by way of gutters, or drains, with a minimum effect, in flushing or cleaning same; that which it will remove at all is removed at once, and after the first few moments, such flushing is of no use whatever, yet it is common practice to let from 100 to 500 gallons per minute run into a gutter, or drain, for a half hour at a -time. This water, utilizing its pressure by direction through a hose and proper nozzle, can often render service fully warranting its use, but it generally does not do so when used as above described. A. B. Wood, mechanical engineer in charge of the pumping stations department states in his report that at the main pumping station the high-lift engines pumped 7,158,551,000 gallons during the year, an increase of about 19 per cent, over the pumpage of last year. The low-lift engines pumped this same quantity against an average head of 20 feet, and the generator engines supplied to the switchboard 444,830 K. W. hours. The average pumpage per day throughout the year was, therefore, 19,612,000gallons, and the average K. W. hours 1,219. The machine shop at this station has performed the necessary repairs for the pumping, purification and sewerage stations, which included the building of new shafts for each one of the sewerage substations, due to the fact that these shafts had been entirely worn out in service. John L. Porter, director of the Water Purification Department, says in his report: The average daily consumption for both plants, Carrollton and Algiers, was 20.6 million gallons, as against 16.94 million gallons for 1912. The gross cost of operation for 1913 was about 10 per cent, higher than in 1912, but the cost per million gallons of water treated was about 10 per cent, lower than in 1912. The composition of the river water during the year 1913 was more nearly average than in 1912, although somewhat more turbid than the preceding years, as will be seen from an inspection of the tables. During the year 7,150 million gallons of water were treated at the Carrollton plant, and 293 million gallons at the Algiers plant. This amount of water carried some 20,000 tons of suspended matter, all of which was removed, and 3,000 tons of hardening constituents, about one-half of which were removed. Two thousand six hundred and twelve tons of lime and 130 tons of sulphate of iron were required to soften and prepare this water for filtration.