Two California prisons are doing their part to conserve water by installing MICROPlumb® plumbing control systems from Sloan Valve Co. Facility operators at California State Prison-Corcoran in Corcoran and High Desert State Prison in Susanville also can use Palm Pilots to remotely turn on and off water flow to sinks, toilets and showers-either in individual cells or complete buildings-for maintenance/repair or security reasons.
Prisons typically install MICROPlumb and other Programmed Water Technologies systems to curb prisoner abuses to plumbing fixtures, which can result in fixture damage, cell flooding and security breaches. Schools and other public facilities with high-use/high-abuse restrooms or locker rooms also have chosen the control systems to thwart vandalism.
MICROPlumb allows facility operators to program pre-set usage parameters, such as how long a faucet can run or how many times a toilet can be flushed within an hour. Limits and complete plumbing system shut-downs discourage abusive behavior and keep prisoners from flushing contraband or other materials that can cause mainline blockages.
But the primary reason that Corcoran and High Desert prisons have installed MICROPlumb is to conserve water. Both prisons are already conserving substantial amounts of water by limiting the number of flushes inmates are allowed, for example, and by converting to Flushometers that use less water per flush.
Corcoran officials report saving thousands of gallons of water per day. High Desert, which has been exceeding its local sewer water treatment agency''s permissible wastewater levels due to overcrowding and high water usage, has decreased its water usage by one-third just by installing MICROPlumb and retrofitting fixtures at its high-security yard alone. High Desert expects to be at acceptable capacity levels once its conversion is completed throughout the prison.