LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles County government has reduced its car washing to just once a month and is retrofitting a downtown car wash to use recirculated water amid California’s historic drought.
The move comes after the Daily News reported last summer that some county supervisors had their take-home cars washed two or three times a week — even as officials urged residents to sharply cut back on water use.
Under new rules instituted this month, all county departments are required to comply with the car-washing limit, the newspaper said Sunday. Previously, departments had a collection of car-washing practices and guidelines and no clear rules.
With a fleet of roughly 12,500 vehicles, the county bureaucracy could conserve many thousands of gallons of water, although officials have not projected savings from the new policy.
Crews last week were installing a recirculated washing system at the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration’s basement car wash. Before the retrofit, the machine used about 50 gallons of potable water per car, according to Dave Chittenden, chief deputy director of the Internal Services Department. The new system will consume about 9 gallons through evaporation and other water loss, he said. Officials expected to begin using it by Nov. 13.