Friday, August 16, 2013

Unclogging Storm Drains

Normally, the city DOES NOT dump the contents of a storm drain into the street. We did this on this trip only to demonstrate the amount of debris and trash in the storm drain. The Department of Public Utilities' Stormwater Division marked each clean drain with a marker that says "No Dumping. Goes to the River" to remind residents that only rain goes down the drain.

After this video was shot, the debris was sorted, bagged, weighed and removed, and the street was hosed clean. All the recyclable items were taken to a recycling center. Only rain should go down the drain!

The 2100 Vactor Combination Unit has a water jet that loosens the debris in drains and removes it. DPU has two Combination Units and two units that are not combinations. It requires at least two people to operate the Vactor. They go to drains recommended for service by citizen and maintenance division requests.

Staff position the Vactor tubing in a storm drain after cleaning away any overgrowth blocking the drain or manhole cover.

Debris fills the drain. Stormwater cannot flow through, and that causes flooding in the street. The debris also contains bacteria that is carried to the James River.

A DPU employee places a marker on the cleaned drain to remind people "No Dumping. Drains to Waterway."

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