Emergency pipeline repairs completed; treatment plant resumes service

Over the last several months, the Santa Clara Valley Water District has worked diligently to complete emergency repairs on the Almaden Valley Pipeline, after an inspection showed damaged sections that needed immediate attention. Planned maintenance on the pipeline continues.

The emergency repair work impacted the Santa Teresa Water Treatment Plant, which receives water through the pipeline,  but with the return of the pipeline to safe and reliable service, the plant was also able to resume delivery of treated drinking water to customers.

Water deliveries with fluoridation returned to optimal levels. Some customers in the Almaden Valley had received non-fluoridated groundwater from the San Jose Water Company while the district worked on the pipeline.

Almaden Valley Pipeline, built in 1960, is a critical piece of the district’s water delivery system. It brings raw water from local reservoirs and the San Luis Reservoir to the Santa Teresa Water Treatment Plant.

The plant went offline when the district started maintenance on the pipeline as part of its 10-year Pipeline Rehabilitation Program. The program calls for the inspection of about 140 miles of Santa Clara County pipelines to ensure the continued safety and reliability of drinking water. While the plant was out of service,  those who usually receive water from it received groundwater in the service area that includes parts of Almaden and Blossom Valley, part of San Jose east of Union Avenue and south of Highway 85, as well as areas of Cambrian Park and Campbell.

Work began in October 2017 with an aim to install new technology within the pipeline that would help the district detect potential problems such as leaks and initiate a quicker repair response. An inspection in November 2017 revealed several damaged pipeline sections that resulted in the emergency repairs. The district completed the repairs earlier than anticipated in March.

Planned maintenance on the Almaden Valley Pipeline continues through May, but the work is minor and will have minimal to no impact on local neighborhoods. In the next few weeks, work starts on the pipeline near Kooser Road and Camden Avenue.

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