Worthington, MN car wash helps water shortage problem - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Worthington, MN car wash helps water shortage problem

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Worthington, Minnesota continues to restrict all non-essential uses of water.

This is a result of the incomplete Lewis and Clark water system, which will eventually bring water to more than a dozen South Dakota, Iowa and Minnesota communities.

For now, washing your car at home is banned, but car washes are still open.

One popular Worthington car wash is doing it's part to save water before the well runs dry.

KSFY News met Jesse Raudenbush, the general manager of Bob and Steve's Shell gas station and car wash.

Raudenbush has been following stories in the news about the water shortage in Worthington and decided he wanted to do his part to conserve.
so he removed the top two washes. Now he's saving water, but losing money.

When water is at a premium, getting the works at this Minnesota car wash is not an option.

"Our goal with operating the car wash has always been to give customers the best value we can. With this water conservation strategy, I think we still accomplish that goal but now it's not just a great value in dollars spent, it's giving the best value in gallons of water used," Raudenbush said.

And some car wash customers had no idea Worthington is running low on water.

Worthington Public Utilities general manager Scott Hain said "it certainly has increased the awareness. A lot of folks come through this station. They've advertised right at the front counter that they're no longer selling the two top washes just due to an effort to try and conserve water and i think it's just raised the awareness."

And as the car wash uses less water, more money goes down the drain.

"We have taken a hit on total revenue. Overall, people are ok with it. They get the lower price package, it's still does a nice job, so overall revenue is down but I believe we're washing the same amount of cars," Raudenbush said.

"I'm thrilled with what they've done here, as I told Jesse at the time, at the very least, it should at least delay us having to implement more stringent measures," Hain said.

"We're all in this together. We're locally owned. We live in Worthington. We do business here and this is something that everybody in Worthington is dealing with," Raudenbush said.

Some might wonder why a car wash can wash cars in Worthington but people can't do it at home. That's because the ban restricts non-essential residential use, and a car wash may be essential to a businesses bottom line.
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