The District’s Collection System consists of over 95 miles of sewer main and several thousand manholes. The care, maintenance and function of the system falls upon the Collections Department. Our goal is to provide the absolute highest degree of service and reliability to the thousands of Estes Valley residents we are privileged to work for. These goals are realized through the use of many different techniques, practices, specialized equipment, and maintaining the drive to be the best.
Sewer Main Cleaning and Inspection
The District’s high velocity Jet Truck and CCTV inspection truck are the most important pieces of specialized equipment in the fleet, and are the first line of defense in preventing sanitary sewer backups. Our jet truck is capable of discharging 65 gallons of water per minute at 2000 psi through 600 feet of 1” hose. Various nozzles are employed on the hose, each specifically designed to tackle tasks like root cutting, general cleaning, and removal of grease and grit. Our CCTV inspection truck consists of a self-propelled track mounted camera, 1000 feet of video cable, and specialized recording software and data management. The District sets a goal every year to jet and televise at least 10% of the collection system. This proactive approach not only ensures proper every day function of components, but also enables staff to make informed decisions on trouble spots and prioritization for rehabilitation or replacement.
System Rehabilitation and Replacement
Much of the District’s collection system, like most other utilities, has an age problem. Dozens of miles of clay pipe and slowly deteriorating manholes have taken a beating from decades of ground movement, root intrusion, cracks, and groundwater infiltration. Constant planning and action is required to ensure continued function of the system. Utilizing data gathered from our inspection program, potential projects develop and are then prioritized. Every project presents its own unique circumstances and set of challenges, and the District takes full advantage of both conventional construction methods as well as ever evolving trenchless rehabilitation and replacement technologies. Projects are completed through both in-house construction and outside contractors.
Fats Oils and Grease
One of the most negative impacts in a collection system is the presence of Fats Oils and Grease, also known as FOG. Accumulation of these materials in main lines and manholes can block flow causing sewer backups and downstream problems at the treatment plant. To combat this, the District maintains and enforces a comprehensive FOG program where grease and oil producing establishments are required to install and maintain grease interceptors. District staff regularly inspect and monitor these interceptors to ensure continuing function, and that minimum pumping requirements are accomplished.
Data Collection and Asset Management
The District puts a high value on accurate data collection that aides in efficient asset management, mapping, and planning. Using state of the art GPS handheld equipment and mapping software, staff collects critical data and location on all existing collection system components. This data has proven to be invaluable, and maximizes the District’s ability to plan future projects, track existing conditions, and enhance relations with other agencies through data sharing and cooperative planning. The District also maintains an evolving collection of maps and drawings that are utilized by our department frequently for daily operations.
A large portion of the collection department’s time is dedicated to locating and marking our mains and manholes for contractors and homeowners performing underground work. Accurate locates not only help the worker, but also protects the District’s critical infrastructure from damage. Department staff members respond to every locate request, 24 hours a day 365 days a year.