District Tries A 'Slushie' to Clean Pipes
In the top photo: The ice pig was injected into the system near the Rancho Paraiso reservoir at the top of the hill (blue arrow) and worked its way to the end of Ridgestone Court. Below, Slurry from the ice pigging is discharged into a Central San manhole.
Describing it as a slushie, Operations and Maintenance staff are hoping an innovative pipe cleaning technique that uses ice will provide long-term relief to a longtime challenging area of our distribution system.
Crews mobilized last week to Ridgestone Court in Walnut Creek, at the far reaches of our service area, where chlorine residuals are known to drop, frequent reservoir rechlorinations and flushing is often required.
Ice pigging, a cleaning method that utilizes an ice slurry to scour inner pipe walls and flush the system, has been used for years with much success in other parts of the country.
The process involves injecting 18 tons of the slurry into our system and discharging it downstream.
Once customer meters were removed and valves turned, Utility Service Group of Georgia was brought in to perform the cleaning. It was the first time the technique has been used in our service area.
EBMUD has used it in several locations as well. The patented method removes biofilm and sediment in a cost-effective manner that is expected to save water through reduced flushing.
Project lead Jimmie Abbott said initial results of the cleaning were positive. The Rancho Paraiso reservoir is now being cleaned, which should provide additional water quality benefits to the neighborhood.
O&M Director Pete Schoemann said we first learned of this technology through our membership Isle Utilities NorCal TAG meetings and presentation at an AWWA conference.
Water quality staff is analyzing the samples and will be monitoring reservoir chlorine residual for long term effectiveness. He also said the project was a success and we will be looking at other opportunities to use the technique in the future.
Pam Gibson Earns First Employee Appreciation Award of 2015
'She treats people like she'd like to be treated'
Senior Customer Service Representative Pam Gibson was named the first Employee Appreciation Award winner of 2015 yesterday.
Speaking in a service bay in the O&M Building, GM Jerry Brown said Pam was given the award for her "superior customer service....she's optimized her staff and resources."
In April, Pam will have worked for the District for 34 years. Jerry said it's special when someone who has worked at the District for so long receives recognition such as the Employee Appreciation honor. "She treats people like she'd like to be treated herself."
In the nomination form, it was stated that Pam visits customers who have complained about high bills. "She does it with compassion in her voice and on her face, her heart is taller than she is."
There were numerous examples of Pam's efforts to help customers, often staying late. She recently responded to a customer who was having trouble with an "no water" alarm and -- even though it wasn't a District issue -- helped the customer solve the problem. "She was willing, able, and saw a need to help someone out and did it without hesitation."
Annual Report Focuses on Three Pillars of Future Success
CCWD's 2014 Annual Report is now available online, recapping the past year and focusing on the "Three Pillars of Future Success."
The pillars are: "Being the Provider of Choice", "Optimizing Our Assets" and "Maintaining Financial Flexibility for the Future".
GM Jerry Brown said in the report the pillars will: "guide us as we continue to build stability in our water supply and reliability."
This year, the annual report is dedicated to Director Karl Wandry, who died in October of 2014.
Tell All Your Teacher-Friends
Schools can now sign-up for education programs in 2015-16
The Contra Costa Water District offers a variety of field trips, classroom programs and assembly experiences to help your students learn about water and their communitys water supply. All programs are provided at no cost to schools located within CCWDs service area.
Read all about it.
Knee Strain is First Injury of 2015
On March 13, an employee strained his right knee while turning a water meter valve that was difficult to turn. There was no lost-time.
This is the first recordable injury for 2015. Prior to this incident, there had been an impressive 76 days without a recordable injury.
Read all about it.
Updated 2015 Safe Practices Handbook Available For Contractors
The new 2015 Contractors' Safe Practices Handbook is now available online.
The new book is available on both the public and employee websites.
'Largest Trout' Derby Set For April at Los Vaqueros
Los Vaqueros will host a "Largest Trout" fishing derby at Los Vaqueros Reservoir during April.
Registration is $5. Participating anglers can weigh up to the daily legal limit of five trout and weigh fish every day during April.
Fish can be caught at either the north or south end of the reservoir, but official weighing will be at the Marina only. At the end of the month, prizes will be awarded for the three largest trout.
The current record for trout is 16.45 pounds.
In addition to increasing planting of trout during the month, approximately 50 tagged fish will be placed in the reservoir.
Any angler (registered or not) catching a tagged fish will win a half-day boat rental.
Free Tickets to Home & Garden Show
Visit CCWD's booth at the show
CCWD has free tickets available for the Contra Costa Spring Home & Garden Show April 10-12 at the Concord Pavilion.
CCWD will again have a booth at the show, so be sure to stop in and say hello.
All you need to do is print these tickets, and you'll get in free.
Parking fees are not included.