ONTARIO, Ore. (AP) — Major repairs are in store for the Malheur Siphon, a steel pipe that carries irrigation water to farmers from the Malheur Reservoir.

The siphon that's about 80 years old stretches for more than four miles across the valley between Vale and Ontario.

The Ontario Argus-Observer reports the work is needed because of unstable, shifting soil around Malheur Butte, which has destabilized support structures on which the siphon rests. Moreover, the outer skin of the siphon has wrinkled because of the expansion and contraction caused by changes in temperatures.

The Owyhee Irrigation District recently accepted a bid on the repair work for $656,000. That's about $200,000 less than a previous bid that was rejected for being over budget.

The project is slated to begin at the end of the irrigation season this fall. The work should be done by April.

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Information from: Argus Observer, http://www.argusobserver.com