Water District invests $1 million in Quail Creek Diversion aging infrastructure; video

WASHINGTON COUNTY – Washington County Water Conservancy District recently invested $1 million to replace aging infrastructure at one of the district’s most critical operational facilities, the Quail Creek Diversion.

Washington County Water District
Crews work to replace the Quail Creek Diversion aging infrastructure, Hurricane, Utah, Dec. 27, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Washington County Water Conservancy District | Click on photo to enlarge

The diversion’s original 20-foot tall and 40-foot wide steel gate has been replaced with a stainless steel version and the existing hydraulic cylinders have been rebuilt. The original concrete structure was unaltered.

The district opted to replace the gate and rebuild the hydraulic cylinders after much research and consultation. Some of the steel in the original gate, installed in 1985, was delaminating and flaking and repair costs were comparable to replacement costs.

Stainless steel was selected as the material of choice after learning it has an approximately 80-100 year life compared to a 30-year life for steel, according to gate manufacturer Rodney Hunt, an international leader in flow control systems founded in 1840. Costs for stainless steel are approximately 25 percent more.

Quail Creek Diversion Hurricane Utah
Crews work to replace the Quail Creek Diversion aging infrastructure, Hurricane, Utah, Dec. 27, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Washington County Water Conservancy District | Click on photo to enlarge

“Paying a little more now will save us a significant amount of money in the future,” Ron Thompson, general manager of the Washington County Water Conservancy District, said. “We’re confident this is a wise investment in our community that will serve many generations to come.”

The 40-ton gate was transported from Rodney Hunt’s headquarters in Massachusetts to the diversion near Hurricane on multiple semitrailers, arriving in full in late December 2013.

Rodney Hunt served as the manufacturer of the original and replacement gate.  Locally owned and operated Caterpillar and construction equipment dealer, Wheeler CAT, rebuilt the hydraulic cylinders and Southern Utah-based Ruesch Machine provided crane services.

About the Quail Creek Diversion

Quail Creek Diversion, the district’s largest diversion, was originally built in 1985 to collect water from the Virgin River. Water is diverted through an 8.7-mile, 72-inch steel pipeline to the Quail Creek Hydropower Plant before emptying into Sand Hollow and/or Quail Creek Reservoirs. From there, the water is treated at the Quail Creek Water Treatment Plant and delivered to the district’s municipal customers to support Washington County’s business and residential populations. 

(report continues below)

About Washington County Water Conservancy District

Washington County Water Conservancy District, a non-profit public agency, was established in 1962 to manage Southern Utah’s regional water needs. Its executives oversee the development, stabilization, management, acquisition and conservation of water resources in Washington County in an ongoing effort to provide a safe, sustainable water supply for current and future generations. Visit www.wcwcd.org for more information.

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