City Water Quality Possibly Threatened by Gov't Flats Fire - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

City Water Quality Possibly Threatened by Wildfire South of The Dalles

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THE DALLES, Ore. - The Dalles could face a long term threat to its water supply from the fire burning south of the city.

Crews have been working to keep the Government Flats fire from reaching the city's water treatment plant, city workers say heavy rain could wash silt from the blackened earth into the surface water.

The city's public works director says that happened in 1967 after a fire, knocking out the plant and giving the city water quality problems after heavy rains for years to come. 

The city now says it hopes to plant grass or grains this fall to hold the soil, followed by tree-planting when there's enough moisture. Among other possibilities is a fence like those used in construction projects to contain silt.