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Rend Lake

The RLCD water district tower.

COURTESY REND LAKE AREA TOURISM

MARION — At just before 2 p.m. Thursday, Marion Mayor Anthony Rinella signed an emergency declaration restricting the use of water in the city until further notice. He said Williamson County has enacted the same emergency declaration.

“We are fortunate to have the storage we do, but even with a limited amount of storage, just over 3 million gallons, at some point in time you run out. We will be at that point in a few hours,” Rinella said.

In a Facebook video posted Thursday evening on the Marion Cultural and Civic Center's page, Rinella said all residents were being asked to conserve water "to the fullest degree."

"As we speak, the pumps at our water plant have been turned off and the only water that is available to the city is that which is left in our elevated water storage tanks," he continues in the video. "As that water is depleted, the pressure will be low on the system, and at some point in time, we will run out of water."

Rinella asked residents to remain clam and patient through the "crisis."

"We have been through worse situations and we have prevailed, and we will do so again," he said.

He said in an interview with the newspaper earlier on Thursday that Marion could have been spared this catastrophe by building Sugar Creek Lake.

“I think it’s more paramount that we build that lake than ever,” Rinella said.

Once Rend Lake gets its system back on line, it will take several hours for water to reach Marion.

According to a Facebook post from the Marion Police Department, graduation was still set to go on Thursday night. Portable restrooms will be available.

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Reporter

Marilyn Halstead is a reporter covering Williamson County.

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