Stories from the Sewer

Stories from the Sewer TREKK Design Group provides many different services such as transportation design, construction inspection, survey, asset management, and GIS.  Another large segment of our services falls within the corner that I work within: TREKK’s water and wastewater department. Over the years, a number of off the cuff stories have been shared about the sewer business. Here’s a compilation of a few memorable ones that individuals at TREKK have experienced.  Enjoy! _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “Fun things happen to us all the time, man.  The stories, they come from all over the place.” -Robby Hartpence, Field Manager   Ballpark Village – Meet This Community St. Louis, Missouri is known for having a growing large sewer system.  TREKK has inspected some very large sewers in many different cities, but never one quite as inviting as in St. Louis, MO: “We did a sewer walk a few years ago downtown.  It was this real large underground tunnel, almost felt like a subway system or something.  We were taking some measurements and doing a general assessment of what all was down there, where the sewer was located, and came across a portion where the street was starting to cave-in.  Well, we also came across some kind of homeless village.  Sofas and tents all over the place, there were little huts burrowed in the walls with plywood, tarps, and all.  There were a couple hundred people – it was like a community down there.” -Ron Thomann, Project Manager   “That was a crazy experience.  Seeing all of those people come out of nowhere.  There were tents and tarps and they had a seating area...
Let It Rain

Let It Rain

I left the office last night in a down pour. After facing drought conditions for much of the fall and winter, Missouri and Kansas were being treated to two weeks of nearly steady rainfall. Perfect flow monitoring weather. As I navigated the puddles on Manchester Road, my mind was anticipating the excitement of reviewing flow meter data in the morning. I told myself not to connect to the meters, but to wait for the midnight data. Our team has been focused on improving the entire process of selecting meter sites, completing installations, downloading and performing maintenance, and – most importantly – reviewing data and making adjustments. A number of thoughts raced through my head: How many structures surcharged and for how long? Did we lose data recording because of debris? Did we capture information that will help develop an accurate hydraulic model to ultimately prevent flooding and overflows? I should have had a camera in that location! How can anyone get this excited about a little water in a sewer? When I pulled into the parking lot, I sent a text to my co-worker, Brandon Freeman, asking if he was as excited as I was – and he was! Because for us at TREKK, collecting good data is more than just a job. We’re passionate about helping our communities solve their flooding challenges and keeping our waterways clean. It’s one of the many ways we’re IMPROVING LIVES. -Jeff Kaestner, Project...