News & Announcements

Posted on: September 29, 2017

Sewer Smoke Testing

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Please be advised that the City of Rock Island and personnel from Veenstra & Kimm, Inc. will be conducting smoke testing on the sanitary sewer lines in the area bounded by 30th Street to 38th Street and 18th Avenue to 23rd Avenue during the period of:  October 16 - November 7.

The City is conducting smoke testing in order to possibly:

· Locate sewer defects before they become more serious.

· Reduce quantity and severity of sewer backups.

· Reduce costs of added sewer cleaning and treatment due to defects.

· Better understand sewer connections within the system.

The smoke that you see coming from the vent stacks on houses or holes in the ground is non-toxic, non-staining, has no odor, white to gray in color and creates no fire hazard.  The smoke should not enter your building unless you have defective plumbing or dry drain traps.  While we have no reason to expect difficulties, we wanted to make you aware of coming activities.  Your patience and cooperation is very much appreciated.

Steps You Can Take to Assist With the Tests and Limit Smoke inside Your Home:

The smoke should not enter into buildings unless leaks or plumbing defects exist.  To prevent smoke from rising out of appropriately-connected drains inside your home, please make sure that traps for all basement floor drains and other sink traps and plumbing fixtures are full of water by pouring approximately 24 ounces of water in each drain before the scheduled test.  Water should be added every 2-3 days during the testing dates stated at the beginning of this notice.  Smoke may be visible from your downspout (gutters), which means they are connected to the sanitary sewer system, no need to be alarmed.   

What if you get smoke in your house?

Should you detect smoke in your building, the room should be ventilated through an open window or door.  While the smoke is harmless, if you believe you might experience irritation of the respiratory system, leave the area and ventilate well to dissipate the smoke.  The smoke is designed to dissipate within 30 minutes and should not damage your belongings.  Please notify the field technicians who are conducting the test should smoke enters your building.

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