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Thursday, September 25, 2014

EVENT: We'll treat the water, you tweet the pics. #neorsdTOUR will include a photo contest

If you are joining us this Saturday, make sure your phone is charged and get your Tweeting thumbs ready.

Our Open House this Saturday, September 27 from 9 to 2 starting at our Environmental & Maintenance Services Center will feature a photo contest and you can join the fun using the #neorsdTOUR hashtag.

RELATED: 5 things to remember if you're headed to our Open House September 27

Share your best photos on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and tag them with #neorsdTOUR for a chance to win two T-shirts and a #neorsdTOUR prize pack.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

HISTORY: Big balls were used to clear sewers of the 1870s

The sewer ball on a vintage postcard. Via

Now that's old school. Cleaning sewers in Paris in the 1870s literally required rolling giant balls of wood and iron through the tunnels.

Atlas Obscura recently posted a story about the history of the world-famous sewer network under Paris, France, including the effort it takes to keep the 160-year-old system blockage free.

Back in the old days (and even in some stretches of sewer today), workers raked muck from sewers that could be reached safely, but some scenarios called for something more. Enter these giant balls of the 1870s. They were forcefully "bowled" against larger blockages to clear tunnels.

Friday, September 12, 2014

SOURCES: Latest tunnel construction project to be powered by giant hamster wheel. Or not.

Not an Onion headline, just fun with an already great photo.

When our Director of Engineering & Construction Kellie Rotunno tweeted her original pic earlier in the week, posting progress on our enormous Euclid Creek Tunnel project, it got our wheels spinning.

In reality, Kellie explained that the 30-ton rebar frame is being lowered into a Euclid Creek Tunnel shaft to connect the shaft with the three-mile tunnel itself. Once in place, the form will be lined with concrete.

We'd need a whole lotta hamsters to power something like a tunnel boring machine, but we are consistently looking for ways to make our Project Clean Lake program smarter and more sustainable.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

WOW: "Wannabe photog" captures lightning strike, eerie shelf cloud over Lake Erie

When storms pop up over Lake Erie, our wastewater treatment plant operators are ready. It's a bonus when someone has a camera ready, too.

These amazing images were taken by one of our consultants from Brown & Caldwell by the name of Nick Bucurel. Nick is on-call at all hours of the day as his job is to monitor some of our plant processes that are only operational during heavy storms. (It's a pilot process known as Chemically Enhanced High-Rate Treatment, or CEHRT).

Lucky for us, his Twitter bio says he's also a wannabe photog.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

#WaterWorks: Pipes, problems, and potential? Why water infrastructure stands in the national spotlight today.

Efficiency doesn't always make headlines.

Today, a national summit in Washington, D.C. is trying to change that by bringing attention to the water infrastructure our entire country relies on and yet so often overlooks.

The goal is to raise awareness of the jobs and economic impact of America's water and sewer projects, a value the Water Research Foundation places at $524 billion over the next decade and more than 289,000 jobs annually. | Download the complete report. Download a national fact sheet.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

VIDEO: Watch the full #OHstormwater arguments from the Supreme Court hearing

Case No. 2013-1770 Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District v. Bath Township, Ohio, et al.

VIDEO: @DCwater GM accepts our director's #IceBucketChallenge. On a green roof.

When one water professional calls out another water professional to a challenge based on buckets filled with the very essence of their work, the results are gonna be interesting.

Cheers to DC Water's General Manager George Hawkins for accepting our director Ciaccia's ice-bucket challenge as both men took the chance to raise awareness of water issues while supporting causes of great importance. Well played, sir.

Hawkins accepted his challenge on a green roof above a massive reservoir. Ciaccia accepted his challenge at our Southerly Wastewater Treatment Center using effluent pulled right from our final effluent.

For old time's sake, here was our video that prompted George's response.

TECH: How to save your new iPhone 6+ if it falls in the toilet [#waittotweet]

Whether you're waiting in line for Apple's new iPhone 6 or still rocking your Blackberry, this can be useful.

Or better yet, you could just wait to tweet.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

LIST: 4 ways Hollywood is like (or not like) what we'll see at our Supreme Court #OHstormwater hearing

Law & Order. The Good Wife. LA Law. Ally McBeal.

How do the popular TV courtroom dramas stand up to an actual Ohio Supreme Court hearing?

We'll find out September 9 when the Sewer District argues its case for a Regional Stormwater Management Program. While it might not make a prime-time lineup, it will be live-streamed, and the hearing is an important one as the decision will have a wide-reaching impact on stormwater management efforts across the state.

Still, before Tuesday, we can make four quick comparisons between Hollywood's courtroom and what we'll actually see in Columbus September 9.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

PIC: And now, just your average sewer blockage longer than a Boeing 747.

Next time you consider flushing wipes or washing cooking grease down your drain, consider you might be contributing to a Boeing 747-size sewer blockage under your city.

It happened in the UK where Thames Water recently spent four days clearing a 262-foot blockage of fat, grease, and disposable wipes from a local sewer. That's more than 20 feet longer than an average Boeing 747 jet.

Our maintenance crews have seen crazy stuff, but never anything close to a mass of this magnitude. Still, the key contributing factors—disposable wipes and cooking grease—are among our top 15 items you shouldn't flush. Just because it can fit down your drain doesn't mean it belongs there.

We say, "Don't use your toilet as a garbage can." In London, they say, "Bin it, don't block it." Even across the pond, sewer smarts are a universal language.