A frenzy of well drilling by California farmers leaves taps running dry

LA Times

By Maria L. La Ganga, Gabrielle LaMarr LeMee and Ian James
Photo: LATimes

Vicki McDowell woke up on a Saturday morning in May, thinking about what she would make her son for breakfast. He was visiting from Hayward, and she wanted to whip up something special. Biscuits and gravy. Fried potatoes. Eggs.

She walked to the kitchen sink to wash her hands. Turned on the faucet. Nothing happened. Worried, she tried the bathroom sink. Still nothing. She flushed the toilet. It gurgled.

The 70-year-old called her landlord. He called a well driller. The news was grim. The well that pumped water to the small, cream-colored house she rents on an olive ranch had gone dry. Seven months have passed. It’s still dry.

Publish : 2021-12-16 21:50:00

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