The Castaic Lake Water Agency and the Los Angeles County Fire Department installed a new water tank at CLWA’s facility above Central Park in Santa Clarita today, joining forces to significantly enhance firefighting ability in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Nearby CLWA water facilities are provided to fill and refill the tank. The tank provides a strategic source of water for the County’s fleet of helicopters to use when wildfires threaten lives and property in the Santa Clarita Valley.
A helicopter landing site already exists on the CLWA property. This site has been used to fight previous fires including the group of wildfires that burned around the Santa Clarita Valley in October 2007.
Central Park, operated by the city of Santa Clarita on land owned by CLWA, has also served as an incident staging area for other recent fires in and around the community.
The addition of the new dedicated water tank at the CLWA facility will further enhance firefighting efforts by allowing helicopters to refill their water tanks without landing.
Helicopters will hover over the tank and quickly pickup water to be dropped on wildfires. The water drops help to support ground firefighters and protect structures.
This resource will also allow the aircraft to protect CLWA’s adjoining Rio Vista Water Treatment Plant, which provides domestic water supplies to over half of Santa Clarita Valley’s residents.
“We all know the stakes when fire breaks out in our community,” said Castaic Lake Water Agency General Manager Matt Stone. “Time saved getting water to the fire front can save lives and homes. We are excited to be able to help L.A. County Fire by hosting this facility in a central location in the Santa Clarita Valley. It is a wonderful way to provide an additional benefit to the community we serve.”
“Our department is excited about the addition of the new tank, which will allow our Firehawk helicopters to rapidly fill their tanks with up to 1,000 gallons per trip,” said L.A. County Fire Department Air Operations Section Battalion Chief Pat Sprengel.
About the Los Angeles County Fire Department, Division 3
The mission of the Los Angeles County Fire Department is to protect lives, the environment and property by providing prompt, skillful and cost-effective fire protection and life safety services. Division 3 serves the Santa Clarita Valley, Castaic, Agua Dulce, Gorman, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Altadena and the Foothill communities.
About the Castaic Lake Water Agency
The Castaic Lake Water Agency is the Santa Clarita Valley’s public water wholesaler and operates the retail Santa Clarita Water Division, serving more than 30,000 retail services. CLWA is one of 29 State Water Project contractors and receives water imported from northern California and Kern County through the California Aqueduct. CLWA operates two large surface water treatment plants, a groundwater treatment facility, three major pump stations, three water storage facilities and more than 45 miles of large-diameter transmission pipelines delivering water to four local water retailers. CLWA’s mission is to provide reliable, quality water at a reasonable cost to the Santa Clarita Valley.