During severe droughts, USACE can temporarily provide water from its reservoirs to help meet local needs. For example, during the 2002 drought in the Washington, D.C. area USACE released 3 billion gallons of water from the Jennings-Randolph reservoir to relieve water shortages for about 25 days. Had the drought escalated the reservoir could have provided up to another 3 billion gallons of water.
Following landfall of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in the Gulf Coast region, USACE was instrumental in providing emergency supplies of potable water and ice to flood and wind-damaged areas. USACE engineers also provided temporary restoration of water supply systems while underlying infrastructure underwent repair.