UPDATE (Oct. 6) -- A leak that’s been sending Lake Mead water into the street at the intersection of Boulder Highway and Major Avenue is expected to be fixed by Wednesday, according to Basic Water Company officials.
People driving in the intersection alerted FOX5 of the leak last month, saying water has been running down the street since last May.
Basic officials confirmed that May time period, saying a contractor hit a line and caused the leak. Officials say they weren’t able to get a part right away to repair the line because of supply chain issues. Those issues have impacted businesses around the country.
People complained about water waste and were worried the leaking water would cause a sinkhole where cars were driving. Basic and other water experts said there wouldn’t be much water waste, saying water was going back into the drainage system and eventually back into Lake Mead.
Officials also said the leaking water was raw, untreated water. However, Basic does supply the city of Henderson some of its drinking water.
FOX5's original report continues below.
LAS VEGS (FOX5) -- People in Southern Nevada are constantly told to conserver water due to a 20-year drought.
For the first time this summer, the federal government declared a water shortage on the Colorado River, which triggers mandatory water consumption cuts in the Southwest. Lake Mead water levels have dropped to lows not seen since it was filled in the 1930s.
That is why some people in Henderson are so upset to see Lake Mead water leaking from under the intersection of Boulder Highway and Major Avenue.
“Lake Mead’s drying up, but yet they’re watering the asphalt,” said Henderson resident Phillip Postier.
Basic Water Company officials tell FOX5 a contractor hit a line in May, which caused the leak. The company has been trying to get parts for repairs but says supply chain issues, which have been felt all over the United States, are impacting it too. It said repairs could be done in a day or so of getting the parts, but officials don’t know when those parts will arrive.
The water that’s leaking is raw, untreated water from Lake Mead. The city of Henderson says it purchases about 15,000-acre feet of raw water from Basic Water Company each year. That water is treated and used to supply about 15% of Henderson’s drinking water. It says Basic owns the rights to about 8,000 acre feet of water annually from Lake Mead and provides water services for Basic Management industrial plants for operations, including fire protection.
“You get on to us for not following the rules but yet this is still going on for three, four months. Come on guys, take responsibility. We’re in a drought,” said Postier.
Basic Water Company, and other water entities, tell FOX5 they don’t think there will be much waste from the leak because the Lake Mead water goes into the drain, into a wash, under Lake Las Vegas and back into Lake Mead. They also don’t expect any evaporation loss would be significant.
FOX5 asked about possible fines for any potential water waste.
The Southern Nevada Water Authority said Basic is not a part of its membership, so there’s nothing it would do. And said enforcement is really up to water utilities.
The Bureau of Reclamation told FOX5 the area is not in its jurisdiction, so it doesn’t have any authority. A spokesperson said that falls on the city of Henderson.
Henderson city officials say Basic has communicated the leak and the city is assisting with permits. It also commented about water waste issues.
“The leak is in their raw water line and there is currently no provision in Henderson Municipal Code that addresses water waste when the City is not providing the water service,” said Senior Public Information Officer Kathleen Richards.