Water and wastewater systems are a vital aspect of our daily lives, and any upset to these systems can have a ripple effect that impacts entire communities. That’s why it’s essential for water utility companies in earthquake zones to understand the threat these disasters pose to their systems and adequately prepare for emergency situations. To minimize damage and decrease recovery time, municipalities need to take an active role in earthquake preparation.
Every wastewater system is unique: Age, geography, pipe materials, rehab methods, and climate all shape infrastructure over time. But even in the diverse landscape of American utilities, some systems stand out.
When integrated with Esri’s ArcGIS platform, WinCan VX sewer assessment software allows users to navigate and analyze inspection data using a rich GIS (geographic information system) interface. With it, users can click map features to link to section and defect information, or they can click a tabular record in an inspection to jump immediately to its mapped location. With this bidirectional link between GIS and WinCan, inspections can be pre-populated with data residing in GIS (eliminating manual data entry) and GIS data can be updated with results once an inspection is complete. Beyond simply mapping data, the ArcGIS integration allows users to filter results, create reports, browse media and build heat maps according to defect type or severity. It also assists with workflow by allowing you to select regions, assign them to specific inspection crews and then monitor per-crew progress graphically with color-coded indication.
Planning a sewer rehab project means weighing many factors for each asset: location; defect type, quantity and severity; surface obstructions; pipe material and age; and more. From his early days in the municipal world, WinCan Business Manager Mike Russin recalls using highlighters with maps tacked to the wall. “It used to be a huge hassle,” he says. “We’d watch VHS tapes, find the spot in need of rehab, use different color highlighters to mark what kind of rehab was needed, and then take the map into the engineer's office at the end of the month to get approval. There were so many hoops you had to jump through.”
What is longer than two soccer fields and weighs more than 19 African elephants? A fatberg that was recently found in east London, that’s what. The fatberg, coined ‘total monster’ by The Guardian, weighs 130 tons and is 820 feet (250 meters) long. Thames Water and Lanes Group, WinCan Web sewer asset management software users, found this massive deposit of fats, oils, grease, wipes and other household waste during a routine inspection in Whitechapel, in London’s East End. Sources say it will take sewer workers three weeks to break up the fatberg and restore the sewer pipe. Once broken up, the waste will be sucked up and taken for disposal at a local recycling plant.
Situated 80 miles west of Philadelphia, the City of Lebanon, PA has become one of the fastest growing small cities in the United States. The City of Lebanon Authority serves as the water and wastewater authority for Lebanon and surrounding municipalities. The Authority’s seven-member sewer inspection crew manages 90 miles of sanitary sewer lines and uses WinCan VX inspection reporting and assessment management software to inspect their sewer lines and plan rehabilitation. Since implementing the software, not only have they realized benefits in terms of planning and efficiency, but they’ve also saved money on inspection and rehabilitation.