Article II. Water

Chapter 13.11


13.11.010    Purpose.

13.11.020    Inspections – Right of entry.

13.11.030    Emergency interruption of service.

13.11.040    City not liable for damages – Inadequate fireflow – Water quality orders.

13.11.050    Refusal, limitation, or discontinuance of service.

13.11.060    Unlawful acts defined.

13.11.070    Violations – Penalties – Chapter 1.20 PTMC applicable.

13.11.010 Purpose.

A. The purpose of Chapters 13.11 through 13.17 PTMC (hereinafter this “water code”) is to promote the public health, safety, and general welfare of the users of the Port Townsend municipal water system, in accordance with standards established by the city, state and federal laws and regulations. In furtherance of this purpose, the following rates and regulations are established for the service, extension and management of the city’s water system.

B. Chapter 13.01 PTMC contains definitions and provisions related to engineering design standards manual, administration and enforcement, compliance with federal, state and local requirements, permit requirements, inspection requirements, performance bond requirements, appeals, waivers and variances which are considered part of this water code. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.11.020 Inspections – Right of entry.

Any person with an existing service connection or applying for a service connection to the city’s water system shall be deemed to have freely and voluntarily consented to entry by authorized city employees with proper identification, at reasonable hours of the day and upon advance notice to the occupant, onto all parts of the premises or within buildings for the purpose of inspecting the water system construction and/or checking conformity to these regulations and the engineering design standards manual. All other right of entry by city employees shall be governed by the procedures of Chapter 1.20 PTMC. (Ord. 2952 § 1, 2008; Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.11.030 Emergency interruption of service.

In case of emergency, or whenever the public health, safety, or the equitable distribution of water so demands, the director may authorize the department to change, reduce or limit the time for, or temporarily discontinue the use of water. Water service may be temporarily interrupted for purposes of making repairs, extension or doing other necessary work, or due to water main breaks or water quality concerns. Before so changing, reducing, limiting or interrupting the use of water, the department shall, insofar as is possible or practical, notify all water consumers affected. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.11.040 City not liable for damages – Inadequate fireflow – Water quality orders.

A. City Nonliability. The city shall not be liable for damages nor will allowances be made for loss of production, sales or service if the city’s source of water supply or means of distribution changes, fails or is curtailed, suspended, interrupted or interfered with, or for any cause reasonably beyond its control. Such pressure variations, failure, curtailment, suspension, interruption or interference shall not be held to constitute a breach of contract on the part of the city, or in any way affect any liability for payment for water made available or for money due on or before the date of such occurrence. The customer shall notify the public works department as soon as possible in the event of any such occurrence.

B. Meters, Pipes, and Equipment on Customer’s Premises. In accordance with Chapter 13.14 PTMC, all water meters and city pipes and equipment shall be located in the public right-of-way. In the event that a water meter and/or other city pipes and equipment are located on the customer’s premises, the customer agrees, as a condition of water service, not to make a claim against nor sue the city for any damages due to water leakage and shall hold the city harmless from any and all claims and litigation which allege damages resulting from water leakage occurring at such meter, pipes, and/or equipment.

C. Inadequate Fireflow. Certain properties at high elevations within the city’s service area may have inadequate fireflow at some or all times due to the elevation of the property. Except pursuant to its authority under SEPA or Department of Health or state law requirements, the city will not prohibit development in such areas; however, the city expressly declines any liability for damage, whether by fire or otherwise, resulting from inadequate fireflow, and reserves the right to impose special conditions on development in, or continued service to, such areas.

D. Water Quality Orders. The public works director shall have the authority to require water users to boil water or take other water quality precautions pursuant to a boil water or other order as required by local, state or federal law. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.11.050 Refusal, limitation, or discontinuance of service.

A. The city may refuse or discontinue service to any customer for violation of any provision of the water system code or for failure to pay bills when due, in accordance with the procedures established by Chapter 13.05 PTMC, state law, or other city ordinances.

B. The city may limit, refuse or discontinue service to any customer who requires or uses such volume of water as may impair the supply or distribution of water or the health and safety of other customers.

C. The city may discontinue or refuse service to any premises upon which a private water supply system is used or operated contrary to the provisions of this chapter.

D. The city may discontinue service to any customer who makes an unauthorized connection to the city’s water system, bypasses a meter, or in any way misappropriates city water.

E. Discontinuance of service for any cause stated in this title shall not release the customer from their obligation to the city for the payment of bills or charges. Whenever service is discontinued as provided above, or at the request of the customer, the customer shall be charged for the shut-off in accordance with council resolution. (Ord. 3051 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010; Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.11.060 Unlawful acts defined.

A. Any person causing damage to any property belonging to the department shall be liable for any and all damages resulting either directly or indirectly therefrom.

B. It is unlawful for any person to willfully disturb, break, deface, damage or trespass upon any property belonging to or connected with the water system of the city, in any manner whatsoever.

C. It is unlawful for any person to store, maintain or keep any goods, merchandise, materials or rubbish within a distance of five feet of, or to interfere with, the access or operation of any water meter, gate valve, fire hydrant, or other appurtenance in use on any water service, connection, water main, or fire protection service.

D. It is unlawful for any person supplied with water from the city’s water system to use the water for purposes other than those named in the application upon which rates for water are based, or for any other purposes than that provided for in his or her application.

E. It is unlawful for any person to refuse or fail to comply with any provision of this water code or the engineering design standards manual. (Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).

13.11.070 Violations – Penalties – Chapter 1.20 PTMC applicable.

A. Director’s Authority. Whenever the public works director or his or her designee (“director”) determines that a condition exists in violation of this chapter or any standard required to be adhered to by this chapter, or in violation of any permit issued hereunder, he or she is authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter.

B. Chapter 1.20 PTMC Applicable. All violations of any provision of this chapter or incorporated standards, or of any permit or license issued hereunder, are declared nuisances and made subject to the administration and enforcement provisions of Chapter 1.20 PTMC, including any amendments, and including but not limited to abatement, criminal penalty, and civil penalty as set forth in Chapter 1.20 PTMC, which are incorporated by reference as if set forth herein. (Ord. 2952 § 3, 2008; Ord. 2579 § 1, 1997).