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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2014
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    Default Using an Easement for a Well to Connect to City Wter

    I live in Lee County, VA (Jonesville, VA). I have a 3 acre tract that is landlocked by one owner. My deed states I have a right to obtain water and an easement for a pipe line to a well located on the owner's property (surrounding my 3 acre tract) just west of my property line. My deed also states: "There is further granted herewith a non-exclusive right of way leading from (Road # omitted) 'main road', crossing the property of (name omitted) 'owner', as shown on the aforesaid plat for the purposes of ingress and egress, to the above property."
    My question comes in as to what are my legal rights in Virginia to run a pipe line via the right of way to access city water at the main road. And the reason for this change on my behalf is that the well has been found to be contaminated. There is a storage tank that holds water from the well that I personally found dead mice in recently. Therefore, instead of trying to fight the owner or pour money into a well that I do not own, I would rather just hook on to the city water and separate any liability between the two parties. Thanks to anyone who can enlighten me on this issue.

    -James

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    38,867

    Default Re: Right of Way / Easement for Water Utilities Pipe Line Construction

    why do you think the well is contaminated? I suspect the mice drowned.



    My deed states I have a right to obtain water
    is that exactly how it is written? Does it say anything about where you can obtain water?


    does your electricity and of used, natural gas come down that egress/ingress easement?

    is maintaining the well your expense? Is it used for anything other than supplying you with water?


    have you spoken to the owner about any of this?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2014
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    2

    Default Re: Right of Way / Easement for Water Utilities Pipe Line Construction

    To try and answer all your questions:

    Contamination - I am no expert on water contamination, but personally observing dead decaying mice floating in the water supply tank would be considered by myself as contamination. I am sure I can verify this by having the water test and I have spoke to a professional to inquire about this. However, if I can connect to city water, which is what I prefer at this point, I see no need to pay for a service to confirm what is obvious.

    Deed word-for-word: "There is further granted herewith a non-exclusive right of way leading from Virginia Route ###, crossing the property of 'owner's name', as shown on the aforesaid plat for purposes of ingress and egress, to the above property.
    There is also conveyed herewith the right to obtain water from a well situated on the grantor's property southwest from the above described tract and an easement and right of way to maintain a pipeline and access to and from the well for the benefit of the above described tract."

    Electricity and Fiber Optic - Fed from main road to a pole located along the right of way for ingress and egress to main road, then cuts across the property owner's land approximately 150 yds or so to a utility pole located on the north side of my property but on the owner's property and a 150 yds or so from my property, which then turns up the hill and is terminated on a pole with in my property to feed my home.

    Maintenance of the well has been a cooperative effort in the past. And it is also used to supply water to several cattle troughs located on the owner's property and was the initial use before we bought and connected to the well. Also, not sure it matters, but the town water was also just installed in this area within the last year and was not available at the time we built.

    I have spoken with the owner. And I didn't get a real concern on his behalf, nor much of anything offered or denied.

  4. #4
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Right of Way / Easement for Water Utilities Pipe Line Construction

    [QUOTE=rbbnsx4;807039]To try and answer all your questions:

    Contamination - I am no expert on water contamination, but personally observing dead decaying mice floating in the water supply tank would be considered by myself as contamination. I am sure I can verify this by having the water test and I have spoke to a professional to inquire about this. However, if I can connect to city water, which is what I prefer at this point, I see no need to pay for a service to confirm what is obvious.
    I was actually kind of joking but even without joking, a well and a retention tank are two very dfferent things. The well may be perfectly fine.


    but if you saw what is in municipal water supplies....well, you might never drink water again. Did you realize Portland Oregon has open top retention ponds where their "finished drinking water" is stored awaiting being pumped into the municipal supply system? You don't think there is stuff in those ponds?

    but I understand your concern statement/

    and if it was me, I wouldn't be using the water at all at this point, at least not without a comprehensive treatment system in place.



    given the utilities utilize the easement, at least partially, you may be able to stretch that to allowing utilities in general. The only real issue would be the pipe being underground rather than overhead. Is there any reason an underground pipe might present a problem to the owner of the other property?

    Issues such as this are usually better resolved if the parties involved can agree to a solution. It is always cheaper and everybody is happier.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
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    2,572

    Default Re: Right of Way / Easement for Water Utilities Pipe Line Construction

    Contamination - I am no expert on water contamination, but personally observing dead decaying mice floating in the water supply tank would be considered by myself as contamination. I am sure I can verify this by having the water test and I have spoke to a professional to inquire about this. However, if I can connect to city water, which is what I prefer at this point, I see no need to pay for a service to confirm what is obvious.
    Take steps to keep dead mice out of the tank. Your easement likely gives you the right.

    "There is further granted herewith a non-exclusive right of way leading from Virginia Route ###, crossing the property of 'owner's name', as shown on the aforesaid plat for purposes of ingress and egress, to the above property.
    There is also conveyed herewith the right to obtain water from a well situated on the grantor's property southwest from the above described tract and an easement and right of way to maintain a pipeline and access to and from the well for the benefit of the above described tract."
    There are no rights granted there which would give any right to use the ingress-egress easement for public utilities.

    Electricity and Fiber Optic - Fed from main road to a pole located along the right of way for ingress and egress to main road, then cuts across the property owner's land approximately 150 yds or so to a utility pole located on the north side of my property but on the owner's property and a 150 yds or so from my property, which then turns up the hill and is terminated on a pole with in my property to feed my home.
    Possibly installed via an agreement for service, which is a license, as opposed to an easement.

    Many public water systems have much worse floating in them and they take on the responsibility to treat it accordingly. You are not required to do anything different. If your deeded source was a nearby river, would you expect someone else to purify and treat your water?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    38,867

    Default Re: Right of Way / Easement for Water Utilities Pipe Line Construction

    Quote Quoting LandSurveyor
    View Post
    Many public water systems have much worse floating in them and they take on the responsibility to treat it accordingly.
    did you catch the Portland Oregon thing where the guy peed in the water? Those ponds are post treatment and ready to be sent into the system.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
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    Default Re: Right of Way / Easement for Water Utilities Pipe Line Construction

    did you catch the Portland Oregon thing where the guy peed in the water? Those ponds are post treatment and ready to be sent into the system.
    I didn't see it but I heard about it. Prior to my recent "semi" retirement I worked on a lot of old big city combined sewer system projects and I can say that I have seen it coming and seen it going out. Massive filtration and massive chlorination meet the EPA requirements. Pee and dead mice are the least of your worries in a public water system. Party on.

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