Millions of gallons of fresh drinking water wasted 

More than 3 million gallons of drinking water gushed into the Bay late last year from a leaky waterfront pipe.

A leaking pipe was repaired beneath the 79-year-old Pier 15, at the end of Green Street, in September after a spike in water usage was detected, according to Port of San Francisco spokeswoman Renee Dunn-Martin.

Another spike in water usage was detected in late November, prompting Port officials to switch off the pipe and install temporary toilets and a wash station for pier tenants.

“Apparently, there was more than one leak,” Dunn-Martin said.

An “unknown third party” switched the pipe back on, leading more drinking water to flow into the Bay, Dunn-Martin said.

By the time the pipe was switched off again in early December – and the valve locked – city water officials estimated that 3.5 million gallons of water had leaked into the Bay since September.

“Port Maintenance had scheduled repairs to Pier 15 several times in December and early January,” Dunn-Martin said. “However, due to the high tides and rainy weather, they were unable to get underneath the pier to repair the leaky pipes until late January.”

Pier 15 is slated to be rehabilitated by the Exploratorium, which is scheduled to shift its popular hands-on science museum from the Palace of Fine Arts to the waterfront location by 2012.

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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