Roza Irrigation District began filling its canal system on Monday after a 20-day mid-season shutdown.
The shutdown was meant to allow Roza to save water to use later this year with the Yakima Basin drought. Some Yakima River water users like Roza are expected to get about 44 percent of their normal supply because of low snowpack..
Roza customers in the Prosser and Benton City area will not see water for a few days because of the time it takes to completely fill the irrigation district’s system.
If Roza had not interrupted irrigation water service, the irrigation season likely would have ended in mid- to late-August. Tree fruit and grape growers need water through September.
If the 44 percent water supply estimate holds, the shutdown and other drought response efforts may allow the irrigation district to deliver water to farmers through Sept. 28.