Jul 082010

Last summer, when Los Angeles water mains were “mysteriously” bursting almost every other day, my wife and I discussed the news and came to the conclusion that the water conservancy programs had to be at least somewhat, if not largely, to blame. It was immediately obvious to us that the extreme variations in pressure and temperature resulting from alternating restricted and intensified use were intense stresses that old pipes simply couldn’t handle.

Flash forward nearly one year and the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power has solved the riddle of the bursting water mains. Their answer?

Exactly what my wife and I said a year ago.

Really? It took that long to figure that out. This post has nothing to do with the two of us patting ourselves on our backs, and everything to do with how pathetic it is that the LADWP took so long to come to that conclusion.

Seriously, I should have walked down there and delivered the answer to LADWP myself.

One would hope that any scientist on staff with half a brain saw the root cause immediately and that it just took months for the bureaucracy to release those very findings. What, then, does that say about the bureaucracy of such an organization? Yes, some time would be needed to prove the assumption, but a series of simple tests that would not take long could easily show that these stresses were indeed the root cause. It’s unfortunate, since the water conservancy programs do serve a good purpose.

And we wonder why the government never seems to get anything done.

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