Sunday, June 16, 2024

Shift The Point Of Pain! (and let’s reap the rewards)

It is currently impossible to determine where blockages are likely to occur in drains or sewers or the formation of partial blockages caused by sedimentation

It is currently impossible to determine where blockages are likely to occur in drains or sewers or the formation of partial blockages caused by sedimentation, which often occurs a significant distance away from the closest access chamber, making cleansing both difficult and costly.

If it were possible to perform cleansing from within the access chamber and to deal with any future maintenance at exactly the same location, avoiding the need to send jetting hoses blindly down the pipe, in the hope that the obstructing material has been completely removed, then this would clearly be beneficial.

Flusher2 is a simple, low cost, easy to install retrofit drain and sewer cleansing device. It works by holding back a measured head of sewage effluent or rainwater, which is then automatically released sending a repeating surge of high-volume, low-pressure liquid through the pipe, removing everything in its path. Typically, within a foul sewer, flushing cycles occur 40-100 times every day, denying any opportunity for sediment to settle or FOGs to congeal and form into more significant blockages. Additional advantages include constantly changing the flow height, or diurnal flow profile, eliminating static flow conditions that allow FOG to build up on the sides of the pipe, a process that typically repeats until a total blockage or fatberg has formed.

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The hydraulic benefits delivered by Flusher2, extend over significant distances, and mobilise sediments effectively both on the upstream and downstream sides of the gate. Its capabilities allow it to be used to overcome physical defects within any drainage catchment. These include, backfalls, bellies, flat sections with an inadequate self-cleansing gradient, and sewers where backwater effects otherwise result in flow not effectively discharging.

The unique Flusher2 design ensures that the flushing gate opens through no other mechanism other than the weight of water forcing a weighted counterbalance gate to tip. This remains in its open position until each flushing cycle has passed. Similarly, it remains in an open position, allowing the unimpeded passage of flow during rainfall events or during other peak flow periods. In addition, the system is fitted with an overflow tube that provides failsafe assurance in the hitherto unwitnessed situation that the gate was to fail in a fully closed position.

We are also delighted to now work alongside an excellent sewer monitoring company, UDLIve. Their unique remote monitoring devices can be installed virtually anywhere within the proximity of Flusher2 to demonstrate its continuous operation, and in the unlikely event of failure, alert maintenance staff. By using these products for catchment monitoring purposes, not purely to oversee the effective operation of Flusher2, the measured discharges and timed frequency of Flushing cycles improve the accuracy of hydraulic modelling. It also facilitates the effective use attenuation throughout the catchment, when comparing dry weather flow results against varying rainfall events.

As a result of the failsafe capabilities mentioned previously, maintenance staff will have time to plan attendance and react accordingly to perform any required wash down or to remove any physical obstruction. Remedial works are performed effectively at the access chamber and in most cases require no need for entry, with a wash down performed with nothing more than a bucket of water which is sufficient to restore the gate to full operation within just a few minutes. Currently, reactive maintenance performed by jetting requires an immediate response with time lost and costs incurred because of finding and then dealing with a problem situated somewhere within the catchment.

Flusher2 can be used a permanent installation where defects and the potential for sedimentation or blockages are highly likely to reoccur. Alternately the solution is reusable and can be deployed for hours, days or weeks, to eradicate problems and provide time for permanent remedial works to be undertaken. The system can then be used again and again at other locations proving an excellent return on investment. Flusher2 can be used to perform scheduled or seasonal cleansing programmes. It can also be used as a pre-cleansing tool ahead of CCTV surveying or planned remedial works, reducing the cost for standby jetting.

A two-person team performing an ‘A Class’ Entry, NC2 or possibly NC1 for shallow manholes, can install, or remove an Flusher2 devices in minutes, with permanent installations taking only slightly longer. Deployment can be conducted locally to 10 sites per day, using nothing larger than a small electrically powered vehicle, significantly reducing the carbon impact when compared with conventional high pressure water jetting. There would no longer be a requirement for millions of gallons of potable water to be used annually for sewer cleansing, and the benefits to our roads, sewers, atmosphere, and our wider environment would be significant. Health and Safety benefits to operatives and the wider general public, will be achieved as Flusher2 performs preventative cleansing safely below ground, with no potential spread of water vapours and the contamination which results from spread of harmful pathogens known to exist within the sewerage effluent.

Keeping our sewers clean perpetually, will improve hydraulic efficiency and result in reduced flooding occurrences and fewer CSO discharges and therefore cleaner rivers and watercourses. Attenuation opportunities will allow Flusher2 to enhance upstream storage capabilities, again reducing the impact on CSO’s and properties at risk of flooding, with more of the effluent able to pass through the sewer catchment.

The cost benefits to our Water Utilities and therefore to bill payers will be significant. The ability to extend the operational life of failing infrastructure and to perform more remediation and less replacement will reduce Capital costs and budgets year on year. Enhanced compliance, fewer fines and remedial costs, reduced adverse publicity and improved customer satisfaction are all direct benefits.

Additional practical benefits allow Flusher2 to deliver ‘Dry-pipe’ conditions that enable CCTV surveys to be conducted and the entire pipe circumference to be observed. This means that all defects are recorded and monitored effectively, and inaccurate assumptions are unnecessary. Benefits extend to safeguarding valuable equipment, reducing the risk of loss or damage or obstruction and flooding that occurs as a result. They also enhance observed remedial operations such as cutting, spot repairs and patch linings, and unlike drain stoppers, the effluent is safely managed without the need for attendance by installing an upstream Flusher2 instead.

Flusher2 should be used to manage a resilient catchment and prevent problems. Not simply to react to the outcome and the pain suffered by so many, and in the case of Rivers by us all. Install Flusher2 devices only in vicinities where problems exist, with the ability to provide protection provided with an easily accessible and known location. Deploy further systems when required, either as a permanent installation, or to allow time for remediation to be conducted. Perform periodic or seasonal cleansing by deploying Flusher2 devices on a cyclical basis, ensuring that more of the catchment benefits from a periodic flushing regime. Use these devices as tools, as a practical and sustainable alternative to sewer jetting.

As a result, save pain, save time, save money and Save our Planet!

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