Effectively Managing Storm Water Systems
What is Storm water?
Storm water is any type of precipitation that runs off a surface such as roofs, sidewalks, parking lots or roads into which it cannot seep. As cities expand and more roads, parking lots, and buildings are constructed, the way in which precipitation run-off can move through the landscape becomes more important and challenging. The water cannot remain on the surface without causing potential damage or diminishing the structural integrity of buildings and other manufactured surfaces. As a result, systems have been developed and engineered to manage storm water as it rains and snows.
Why is managing storm water so important?
There are two significant reasons why managing storm water is important. The first is faster runoff. When it rains or snows in the city with numerous roads and buildings and storm water management systems excess water is evacuated these much faster than if the rain had simply fallen in a natural environment.
In the wilderness rain lands and slowly seeps back into the earth. In a city, there is much faster runoff from the constructed surfaces on which it lands. This in turn creates even larger volumes of water flowing to and within surrounding creeks and rivers. Increased volume can lead to erosion, damaged stream banks and beds, local flooding, undercut roads and stress on building foundations.
Secondly, storm water needs to be managed because it also acts as a pollutant transport. Rainwater does not originate from a single source like a discharge pipe, so as it flows across various surfaces picking up all manner of impurities (oil from the roads, fertilizers, car materials etc.) and carry it to nearby streams and river
What kinds of systems are in place to manage storm water?
One common way of managing this large volume of water is a storm water basin. They are designed to collect storm water and slowly release it into the earth at a controlled rate so that downstream areas are not flooded.
Low Impact Development (LDI) is also a management tactic used by some expanding cities and communities. LDI focuses on conservation and use of on-site natural features to protect water quality. This includes planting more greenery to absorb water, rain gardens, better site design, cisterns or rain barrels and more.
However the most common management system is storm water pipes/drains designed to remove and direct excess rainwater or melted snow from impervious surfaces. These drains can be designed in various ways from residential dry wells to large municipal systems that are generally fed by gutters running along city streets and motorways. These can include storm sewers designed specifically for water runoff and combined sewers intended to serve as a sanitary and storm sewer.
Why are regular storm water management inspections important?
As with any structural system, regular inspections to ensure the integrity of the pipes/drains/basins are important. Pipelines can encounter a number of issues that need to be tended to on a regular basis. Blocked pipes, leaks, cracks, and sediment build up are some of the common challenges that face pipeline flow systems. Cracks, leaks and weak structures can cause problems to the entire management system.
By performing regular inspections of storm water systems including the inflows, outflows, manholes, internal pipes and water basins, municipalities and contractors can rest assured that all is well and the system is operating at its full capacity. If something is wrong with the system, the longer it sits the deficiencies often multiply and compound.. By completing frequent inspections, maintenance workers can address issues as soon as they are recognized.
Where does Deep Trekker come in?
Deep Trekker builds robust underwater inspection systems in the form of pipe crawlers and mini-remotely operated vehicles (ROVs).
All Deep Trekker products are completely portable with on-board lithium batteries that provide 4-8 hours of run time, enough to do an entire inspection day’s work. The designed emphasis on portability and quick deployment means no additional components such as generators or dedicated service trucks are required. This also results in significant cost reductions and the ability to easily inspect in more remote areas.
The DTG2 ROV system is the perfect tool to perform storm water basin inspections. Deep Trekker ROVs are built using a patented pitching system that allows the ROV to fly up, down, side to side, back and forth with only two thrusters. It is extremely easy to use and is operated with a game-style pad controller housing an integrated super bright viewing screen. Inspectors have everything at hand to monitor and inspect any system with ease.
The DT340 Pipe Crawler system is quickly becoming the “go-to” system for storm water pipe and drain inspections. With various wheel sizes and track options, Deep Trekker’s pipe crawler system is designed to effectively operate within a wide variety of pipe size inspections and soil types. The DT340S system sports a pan/tilt/zoom camera, steerable wheels and the same easy-to-use controller found on other Deep Trekker ROV systems.
Due to the complete portability and innovative design of all of Deep Trekker’s products, maintenance crews, municipal officers and inspection companies can quickly and easily complete a professional inspection without breaking the bank.