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Sullivan inflow and infiltration work gains momentum

As the vote on the Bridgeport Sewer District nears, the town continues to address the concerns of Sylvan Beach officials in sending any more flow to its sewer treatment facility. The Sullivan Town Council approved the expenditure of about $40,000 to begin fixing the problems it promised Sylvan Beach to address 10 years ago.

"There's some work that needs to be done on the East Sullivan Sewer District," said engineer Kenneth Knutsen of Barton & Loguidice. "The mapping we've done under Phase I of the infiltration study, where we mapped all the existing manholes that are tributaries, there are some wet weather problems in that system. During significant rainfalls, the Sylvan Beach pump station has reported surcharges."

Knutsen said the state Department of Environmental Conservation Region 6 directed the town to do further investigation to remove sources of inflow and infiltrations. He said a proposal by his firm would include inspection of about 100 more manholes.

Knutsen said about 38 of 137 manholes were inspected last year before weather stopped work on the effort.

"What we are looking for are sources of inflow and infiltration that result in spikes that reach that pump station," Knutsen said.

Supervisor John M. Becker said last week that Barton & Loguidice staff spent from midnight to 5 a.m. one night earlier this month to observe flows around the ESSD during the lowest usage period.

"This is when sanitary flows in the pipes are minimal," Knutsen said. "We are looking for clean water and the manholes that have the most flow coming into them."

According to Becker, Knutsen and colleague Christian Lawton observed about an inch-and-a-half of steady flow even during that time. Additional measures planned include the installation of flow meters and analysis of the data collected by the devices, Knutsen said.

"We want to try to catch the wet weather events and follow up on smoke test problem spots to try and inspect suspect areas," Knutsen said.

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