Water utility district officials hope to recover ‘crashed’ archival reporting data system

A monthly data report to the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality wasn’t sent in May because an archival process failed and there was no back-up, an Apache Junction Water Utilities Community Facilities District official said.

It had kept a history of data since the beginning of the operation of the Superstition Area Water Treatment Plant. The Central Arizona Project water treatment plant is on Ironwood Drive just south of Baseline Road and has been in operation since late 2016.

“Well, unfortunately it crashed this past week so we are in the process of getting that rebuilt,” Mike Loggins, water district engineer, said May 15 to Apache Junction City Council members serving as the water district board.

“We’re actually looking to see if anybody can recover the data. We’ve been doing that the last week. We actually have somebody out there still tonight, looking into that, seeing what we can and can’t do,” Mr. Loggins said.

“The reason why it is important to us is because at the end of each month we have to get reports from our SCADA machine and also turn it into ADEQ to make sure we’re in compliance with them,” he said of the water district’s Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition system.

Water quality continues to be monitored and is not affected by the data gathering, officials said.

“But I can assure you guys, water quality – we can still see everything that’s going on out there. We are in compliance there,” Mr. Loggins said.

“We will have a missed-monitoring violation because we don’t have the reports and we can’t back up these facts with the data we have. So we are working on that to see if we can recover that data and get back into compliance with the missed-monitoring violation,” he said.

“But again, there’s no(t) anything wrong with the water, any water-quality issues. We can still see that. We’re manually keeping track of that currently until we can get these all back up online and get it recovered,” Mr. Loggins said.

“Will they look at the facts and say, ‘OK,’ and kind of go easy or is it just straight out you missed?” Christa Rizzi, water board member, asked.

“As soon as this happened we’ve been in contact with them since then,” Mr. Loggins said.

“They have rules that they have to follow and since we didn’t turn it in by the 10th, they really can’t do much other than saying it was a missed-monitoring violation. And again, as soon as we can repair that or get the information to them, that will go away,” he said.

“It doesn’t have a back-up for that system?” Robin Barker, water board member, asked.

“Currently there is not. We believed there was and that’s the other thing we’re working on currently,” Mr. Loggins said. “We met with four different programmers today to figure out why there wasn’t a back-up system in place,” he said.

“Just a clarification. On the reporting, it’s not monitoring because we do have real-time monitoring in place,” Frank Blanco, water district director, said to the water district board.

“So we are continuously monitoring information to make sure that the process is working right and we do have safe drinking water,” he said.

“But the reporting piece is what we’re not able to do at this time and that’s the violation that ADEQ will consider is the reporting violation because we were not able to get a report in on time. That’s the situation,” Mr. Blanco said.

The water district, formed by the city of Apache Junction on Aug. 2, 1994, is responsible for providing water service for approximately 8 square miles, which accounts for more than one-third of the city of Apache Junction. The website is www.ajwaterdistrict.org.

The remaining area is served by Arizona Water Company. Its website is www.azwater.com.

Editor Richard Dyer can be reached at rdyer@newszap.com

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