Water Again Flows for Riverton Farmers

Riverton farmers unable to water their crops for three weeks finally have water headed their way.

News 13’s Landon Harrar shows us some farmer's reactions to finally getting water.

The head gates to the canal opened this morning.

Wayne Neil, Project Ditch Manager commented, “We started opening our gates oh approximately 8:30 this morning and its headed down to the country it will take several hours for it to move through the system I think it’s about 12 to 13 miles down there.”

Another Riverton resident without water, Bill Jennings commented, “I guess the anticipation is killing me, I don’t know what to expect and kind of just want to see where we can get from here, so now comes the time planning trying to see what has actually happened to the crop in the meanwhile, they don’t look as bad as I had somewhat assumed they would.”

The canal project may be finished, but still there’s work to do for irrigation district council members.

“We’re done for the time being we’ve got reclamation work to do later on at a later date but the service work to get us going is about to the end year.”

Governor Mead stopped to see the progress earlier this week because irrigation district members have asked for emergency assistance money from the state.

“This state of emergency we’re having here and he was just on his way through and just decided to land and see it first hand, he’d seen pictures but wanted to see it firsthand.”

Jennings said his crops have struggled, but survived, still there’s no telling what damage has been done until it's time to harvest.

“With the insurance and everything at this point in time with the plants still being alive we will have to take them to harvest, that harvest time will be the telling time.”

Jennings biggest hope is for a long fall, they’ll need frosts to come late so they can make up a little of the lost growing time.

The entire canal re-build cost roughly 750-thousand dollars, district members said this is with reclamation and other similar tasks still ahead.

They’re looking at a roughly two and a half million dollar price-tag to get water back to the farmers who need it.