The Collections Department is responsible for the maintenance and operation of the Regional Sewer District’s sanitary sewer system.
The sanitary sewer system is important infrastructure that conveys wastewater from our residential and commercial customers to the treatment facilities and prevents unauthorized discharges to receiving streams. This protects the water quality.
The daily essential job functions performed by the department include, but are not limited to the following:
- Routine inspections of the sewer system for inflow and infiltration, blockages and odors.
- Repair manholes and perform routine maintenance on wet wells, force mains, and gravity lines.
- Assisting in the maintenance of the grounds throughout the sewer district including: regional plants, package plants, lift stations, and sewer easements.
- Maintaining, inspecting, and monitoring the Sewer District’s fat, oil, and grease (FOG) program.
- Operating collection system equipment; e.g. vac truck, jet truck, sewer camera systems, air release valves, and in-line valves, etc.
- Responding to declared county emergencies and other emergency situations that may require the use of equipment to protect public health and safety.
- Operating, calibrating, and maintaining chemical feed systems for odor control.
- Performing composite sampling at site locations of industrial/commercial accounts per approved standard operating procedures.
Critical Skills and Expertise
- General knowledge of confined space entry equipment, procedures, and the occupational hazards associated with confined spaces.
- General understanding of the necessity for proper sample collection, preservation, and documentation including chain-of custody protocols.
- General knowledge of pipes, pumps, motors, valves, and related equipment.
- General knowledge of wastewater treatment chemicals and associated SDS.
- Masonry, pipe fitting, and concrete finishing.
- State of Ohio Commercial Driver License
- NASSCO-Pipeline Assessment Certification Program, Manhole Assessment Certification Program, Lateral Assessment Certification Program
- Ohio EPA Collection System / Wastewater Operator Certification.
The Collections Department is responsible for a wide variety of county assets in the sanitary sewer system. This includes 438 miles of gravity mains, 10,081 manholes and 30 miles of force mains, all of which require continual maintenance. Because of this, there are several specialized programs that have been established to properly schedule and maintain compliance with the County’s National Pollution Discharge Elimination System Permit (NPDES).
The specialized programs established to maintain regulatory compliance are as follows:
- Capacity, Management, Operation and Maintenance (CMOM) – is a comprehensive program implemented for the purpose of managing the sanitary sewer system of the Delaware County Regional Sewer District. The essential functions carried out in this program include, but are not limited to: flow monitoring, collection system management, manhole inspections, pipe cleaning and televising.
- Because of the demand to provide public sanitary sewers, the Capacity portion of the program is critical. For the purpose of engineering flow modeling, flow studies are conducted on existing sanitary sewers. The flow studies provide the County information to determine if proper capacity is available for future developments.
- Collection System Management is the key to success in properly maintaining a sanitary sewer system. Critical management skills are required to protect the buried infrastructure which include, but are not limited to: employee management, organizational structure, training, internal communications, work scheduling and customer service. Because of the size of the County’s collection system, critical planning and scheduling is required to remain on course to maintain compliance in preventing unwanted plugs and backups or overflows. Currently, the CMOM program is guided by a 5 year rotating schedule in which the entire system is inspected. Each year’s management schedule focuses on a predetermined section of the collection system to ensure that the entire system is maintained on a generally equal basis.
- Operations and Maintenance of the collection system is performing planned and unplanned maintenance including, but not limited to: manhole inspections and repairs (including re-sets and re-seals of the manhole castings to ground level for county access), force main air release inspections, jetting/vacuuming of the gravity mains to remove debris (including heavy solids, grease and grit that accumulates inside the pipes), and conducting closed circuit televising (CCTV) for the purpose of inspecting the internal conditions of the system infrastructure.
- Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) – is a program created to facilitate the maximum beneficial public use of the County’s services and facilities while preventing blockages of the sewer lines resulting from discharges of fats, oils and grease to the sewer facilities. The prevention of FOG blockages and backups and/or sanitary sewer overflows is completed by chemical grease removal in the system, jetting/vacuuming of gravity mains and pump station wet wells.
- Chemical Odor Control (COC) – is a program established to prevent unwanted odors and corrosion in the collection system, pump stations, force main outfalls, and the headworks of the treatment facilities. Wastewater is commonly known for its potential to create odor nuisances from a variety of sources, including odors escaping from sewer manholes and wastewater treatment facilities. Currently, the County applies a calcium nitrate solution at the pump stations in an effort to reduce odorous gases that may be generated from anaerobic wastewater conditions in force mains. Routine inspections and web-based monitoring of odor control equipment is required to keep unwanted gases at a minimum.
- Commercial/Restaurant Sampling – is conducted on a quarterly basis as required by Delaware County Commissioners Resolution. The purpose of the sampling program is to monitor commercial and restaurant customers who may be discharging wastewater into the County’s collection system that is defined as “extra strength” above the normal sewage definition. “Normal sewage” is defined as sewage, when analyzed by weight, shows a daily average of not more than 250 mg/l of totals suspended solids (TSS), and not mot than 200 mg/l of biochemical oxygen demand (CBOD). Upon the conclusion of the sampling event and laboratory analysis, calculations are performed to determine the pounds of excess of TSS and CBOD and multiplied by the cost/pound as outline in the resolution. If necessary, each commercial and restaurant customer is charged a surcharge fee for the extra strength discharge.
- 5-year Bond Inspection – is conducted by the collections department on an annual basis. Inspections of newly developed sanitary sewer systems are required for the purpose of final acceptance of the newly system into the County’s sanitary sewer system. During the 5 year bond period, the department conducts physical inspections of all appurtenances of the newly developed systems on an annual basis in years one through five. During the fifth and final year, the system is cleaned and televised to note any sub-surface defects.
The Collections Department is subject to a wide variety of occupational exposures while performing routine daily duties. Many of the exposures may often cause acute and chronic health conditions and possibly serious health related issues. The Regional Sewer District Joint Health and Safety Committee works diligently to identify work related exposures and provide technical standard operating procedures and hands-on training to protect the employees from illness and injury in the workplace. The most common hazards that the Collections Department face each day includes, but is not limited to:
- Confined Space Entry
- Hazardous Atmospheres
- Blood borne Pathogens
- Fall Protection
- Traffic Zone Safety
- Ear, hand, and foot protection