Related Links: Sewer Root Control
The City’s ongoing Closed Circuit Television inspection program sends remote cameras into the sanitary sewer lines to identify potential problems, like roots and cracks, for both the city and homeowners.
A truck purchased in 2005 is equipped with a pan and tilt camera with digital zoom, which allows crews to maneuver the camera through the pipes and up the sewer laterals, the pipes connecting your house to the main sewer line, for up to 80 feet. From the footage the camera sends back, crews are able to see where roots have grown into the pipes, identify structural problems, even see where residue has solidified along the pipes.
If the crews discover a problem in the laterals leading to a home or business, they will place a door hanger at the residence, sometimes with an image showing the severity of the problem. It is then the homeowner's responsibility to see that it is fixed.
The Wastewater Division is currently in the process of re-inspecting the entire city, both looking for problems and determining how every structure is connected. It's a process that won't be completed until 2020. The city's goal is to TV the city every 10 years and clean it every five years.
Video #1 - Inspection on River Road 1:57 View AVI (Windows Media Player)
This video taken in May of 2006 shows a virtual trip through a sewer main on River Road. The main here is an 8-inch clay pipe. While viewing this video, watch for:
0:25 - The camera turns to look up a lateral here and shows roots growing into the pipe. At this point, the homeowner would be notified.
1:28 - A small root intrusion in the main.
1:30-1:50 - Notice the white crust beginning to increase along the top of the pipe. This is solidified grease that was deposited here from high water, caused by the large root intrusion that begins to appear.
1:50 - A large root intrusion
Video #2 - Up the lateral 1:57 View AVI (Windows Media Player)
This video was shot in October, 2005. The camera moves down the main and rotates into position and launches the secondary camera up the lateral, where it encounters root problems in a joint. Look closely here, and you'll see insects crawling through the roots. The picture-in-picture at the bottom of the screen shows the launcher that sends the secondary camera and the cable that connects it.
Video #3 - Cutting through obstructions 0:43 View AVI (Windows Media Player)
This video was taken in January, 2006 and shows the machine used to cut through root intrusions and clean the pipes.