The Water System at San Diego, Cal.

The Water System at San Diego, Cal.

San Diego is at the present time a city of 90,000 inhabitants, as estimated by Pope’s Directory, the Telephone Company and by the number of water and gas meters installed. The city is twenty-seven miles long and from three to five miles wide. It is situated in the extreme southwestern part of the United States and will be the first United States port of entry upon the completion of the Panama Canal in 1915. At the present time they are working on the Panamal alifornia exposition, which will be open 365 days during the year 1915. On account of the warm, sunny winters and the even summers, tempered by the winds from the Pacific, the climate for the year round has a slight variation ranging from 15 degrees in the winter to 95 degrees the summer. The consequence is that the distribution of the water changes very little from winter to summer and provision has to be made for irrigating and sprinkling of lawns the year round. The water to San Diego is supplied by a gravity line from the mountains, the city owning four impounding reservoirs ranging from a distance of 63 miles to 7 miles from the center of the town. The quality of the water is unsurpassed in regard to purity and is distributed to a main receiving reservoir of seventeen million gallons capacity. Prom the main distributing reservoir it is distributed through successive stages to six additional reservoirs located at different points of town. This main receiving reservoir is located on University Heights and has a volume of 17,000,000 gallons and is across the road from the old University Reservoir which contains 3,172,000 gallons. These two reservoirs are the same level and are connected by an equaliz ing pipe. From the main distributing reservoir the water flows to the two reservoirs on Point Loma. one at Old Town, one at La Jolla and one at Pacific Heach. There are two standpipes which get their supply from gas-driven pumps, pumping from adjacent reservoirs. The combined capacities of these reservoirs and standpipes give the town a supply of over thirty nil lion gallons when all the reservoirs within trie city are filled.

The water is distributed from the above reservoirs through cast iron and wrought iron mains varying in diameter from 2-inch to 36-inch, there being a total of 880 miles of pipe. There are 808 hydrants and over 2,000 gate valves. The city at the present time is doing work to the amount of $310,000, which consists of the installing of 4,500 tons of cast iron pipe, together with all valves, fittings and hydrants necessary. This includes one and otie-half miles of 30-inch pipe, about two miles of 24-inch pipe, over three miles of 18-inch pipe and the balance to consist of and 12-inch pipe. There will be installed 125 hydrants of a type got out by the Department of Water, as shown in the accompanying photograph On account of the climate the water stands in these hydrants at all times of the year and they are passed by the Hoard of l ire Underwriters as of the most efficient make. It is what might be called a typically southern hydrant, the valve being operated by a horizontal stem opposite the valve opening on the back part of the hydrant.

The construction work of the department divided into three sections, construction, operation. and services, each in charge of a foreman who answers to the assistant superintendent di-


rect. The foreman of construction lays all the cast iron pipes, valves and fittings pertaining to same; the foreman of services installs all meters, services, laps and all wrought iron screwed pipe; while the foreman of operation has charge of the installation of all hydrants, repairs of all valves, automobiles and machinery in general, as well as being responsible for the reservoirs and pump stations and the testing of the meters before installation and repairing of same. San Diego is 100 per cent, metered and at the present time has 13,506 meters varying in size from ⅝-inch to 0-inch. The majority of pipe in the downtown section of San Diego is 10 and 12inch, while the distributing mains are from 10 to 30-inch, and for a city of its size San Diego is unsurpassed when it comes to fire fighting equipment.

The fire fighting apparatus is all motor-driven and consists of five steamers, two pumping engine, one 85-foot aerial ladder truck, auto-drawn, seven 80-horsepower combination wagons, one 40horsepower combination wagon and a chief’s auto. ‘File above equipment takes the place of thirty horses. The fire alarm system is a Gamewell. with its headquarters at Station No. 2. There are 121 street boxes of the latest improved pattern and the system is both automatic anti manual. There are 122 miles of wire with six box circuits and one instrument circuit. Within one-half minute after the alarm is turned in notice is transferred to the station nearest the fire and the apparatus is on its way to the scene. There is a thorough monthly inspection throughout the whole department and with the co-operation given by the Department of Water, which has two men on every second alarm fire, the re-ults obtained by the fire department have been excellent, there having been no fire of any note within the last three years. The Department of Water is in charge of Major Herbert R. Fay. member of the common council, assisted by H. A. Whitney, hydraulic engineer. The Bureau of Accountability is in charge of H. L. Worthen, the Bureau of Conservation is in charge of R. Wueste, supervisor, and there being no general foreman. Assistant Superintendent H. A. Whitney assumes this additional responsibility.


The volunteer fire company of East Dubuque, la., has voted to disband. Copies of the resolution taking this step, signed by 34 members of the organization, have been forwarded to the city council and insurance companies. The firemen’s action is the result of several grievances, the more recent being the granting of the use of their hall for public meetings without consulting the officers of the company, and the storage of other city property in the fire house.

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