The sewer maintenance division of Municipal Services is responsible for keeping the sanitary and storm water collection systems in good working order and free from defects that would cause environmental or property damage.
“The sanitary collection system consists of 615 miles of sewers that need to be maintained on a set schedule to keep them free from blockages that might cause a sewer backup into a basement or an overflow into the environment,” said Conway. “This has been accomplished in the past (prior to Deep Trekker) by a crew of eight employees and 4 high pressure jet trucks to clean each sewer pipe. There was no way to know exactly when a pipe needed pressure cleaned so every pipe was cleaned not knowing the actual condition of the pipe.”
In order to conduct inspections and cleanings in a more efficient manner, the City of Independence acquired a DT320 and a DT340. Perfect for inspecting pipes from 6” to 12” in diameter the DT320 is a durable and compact vehicle, while the DT340 boasts the same convenience and ease of use for pipes 8” to 36”. Both vehicles are tough and designed with portability in mind. Battery powered vehicles mean that users can conduct inspections without the need for topside power, while durable construction prepares the vehicles for the tough work they’ll face in the trenchless industry.
One of the benefits of utilizing a Deep Trekker pipe inspection system is the immense potential for financial savings. “The DT320 and DT340 give us that ability to take just a quick look at the condition of the pipe and then we can determine whether it needs pressure cleaned or not,” shared Conway. “Our department has decided to reduce our pressure truck fleet by one and then utilize two pickups outfitted with Deep Trekker crawler cameras for inspecting pipes.” By using their pipe crawlers, the City of Independence is able to save money by only pressure cleaning when it is necessary. As Conway noted before, prior to obtaining the Deep Trekker vehicles, the team would clean every pipe without actually knowing the condition. Using the pipe crawlers, the teams can confirm whether or not the cleaning is actually needed, therefore optimizing their operations. Conway also noted, “pressure cleaning is hard on older collection systems with reinforced concrete pipe or vitrified clay pipe, the Deep Trekker helps extend pipe life.” By maintaining pipes for longer, the City is able to maximize their investments.
The Deep Trekker vehicles also allow the City of Independence to reduce their pressure truck fleet, saving further money for the City. “The plan is to send crews out in these pickups outfitted with the cameras to televise each pipe and then we only pressure clean the ones that need it,” explained Conway. “This saves money in several ways. We can purchase two new pickups and outfit them with Deep Trekker cameras for the same or less price of a new pressure truck. Pressure trucks cost much more to maintain with repairs and fuel. We will use a lot less water each year used to pressure clean pipe that doesn’t need it.”
“The recent COVID-19 pandemic has modified our staffing levels but we have just recently outfitted our second pickup with a DT320 and look forward to utilizing it when we return to regular staffing schedules,” Conway stated.
In addition to maximizing budgets, the Deep Trekker vehicles provide the Sewer Maintenance Division with a convenient and straightforward way to complete their jobs.
The ease of use contributes to the overall convenience of Deep Trekker pipe crawlers. “You don’t run the risk of getting hung up or stuck in a defective pipe,” Conway noted. “We have found that the DT320 works best in 8” pipe which is primarily what most of our collection system is, especially if that pipe has had a liner installed, now it has an even smaller inside diameter” explained Conway.
The battery powered vehicles have assisted the Sewer Maintenance Division in maintaining pipes that are harder to access. “We also wanted to be able to maintain pipes that are not easily accessible,” shared Conway. “Having a battery powered camera lets us take these cameras wherever we need without the need of a generator for power.”
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At Deep Trekker we pride ourselves on putting our customers first. Conway echoed this, “We have had a couple minor issues with our DT340’s but they were quickly fixed under warranty and shipped back at Deep Trekker’s expense. Staff is responsive and a pleasure to work with.”
We sincerely thank Jeff Conway and the City of Independence, Municipal Services, Sewer Division for their time and for sharing their story!
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