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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lights, Camera...

When John came home and told me he'd seen inside our sewers, I had to go look. Woohoo! The Advanced Sewer Technology truck had appeared on our street like the Wells Fargo Wagon, spreading excitement, joy and sewer video.

Hey, this stuff doesn't happen every day.

The monitor in the upper left of the photo shows the main sewer line under my street. It's quite clean, considering.

The gentleman in the photo was handling cords and lines, making sure they didn't get stressed or caught up in anything. Another person on the truck operated the underground camera, which can go as far as 6,000 feet.

These guys were inspecting the main sewer line as well as lines to individual homes. The man I spoke to said the camera couldn't get through in some places because of tree roots. (Pasadena has a lot of trees.) Advanced Sewer Technology reports such glitches to the gas company, who hired them to look for gas pipes in the sewer tunnels.

To the workers and companies involved, this means safety and problem prevention. To me, this means there's a manhole on our block I hadn't noticed before. Strange how you can drive over something every day for five years and not know it's there.

(Meanwhile, my newest article is up on South Pasadena Patch: The Gabrielinos: Life at the Mission is second in a series.)

17 comments:

Dina said...

You guys find the most interesting opportunities. Now you even get to see inside the bowels of the earth.

Mister Earl said...

OK, but I'm still not putting the photos of my colonoscopy on my blog.

Petrea said...

Dina, it would have been more exciting to have a film crew on my street, but this is what I've got! (An archaeological dig would be even better.)

Thank you, Mister Earl. The blogging world is grateful.

Bellis said...

Mr Earl had the same thought I did - my colon looked surprisingly clean inside as well.

Anyway, isn't technology wonderful? Sure beats sending a small child down there.

Susan Campisi said...

How wonderful to have a clean sewer line, something we take for granted until, well, it's not clean anymore. I wonder if that truck is going to inspect the Altadena lines... Knowing LA County, I doubt it.

Petrea said...

I agree about the technology, Bellis. And you made me laugh.

I suppose it depends on who you buy your gas from, Susan. The gas company hired these guys, as opposed to a municipal or county entity. In our area, it's So Cal Gas.

Susan Campisi said...

Oh, right. You said that. I'll have to look into it.

Margaret said...

I can't even tell you how cool this is. What lives of mystery and mystique these guys live.

Gina said...

I definitely would have had a look. I wonder if they ever see anything more unusual than tree roots - like objects that have been inadvertently (or purposefully) flushed.

Virginia said...

Gotta love those sewer inspector dudes!!! Bravo for the red thingies.
V

Ms M said...

So is this like a colonoscopy for the city sewer system?

Steven said...

The wonders of modern technology. I have a friend who works for the city water works division. He says "Our job is to keep the the drinkinging water and the shite water all flowing in the right direction and never the two may meet." No one evr complains till there is a problem. He said they have pulled out tree roots that were over 20 feet long and as big around as your head. He also said he was NEVER seen a sewer rat. These guys are really good at what they do.

Ms M said...

Oh -- I see Mr.E and Bellis already thought the same I did...

Petrea said...

The city colonoscopy continued today, further down the street. I must say, these gentlemen are clean! After viewing the video, I was impressed--really, it's got to be a bit tedious. If I were on that job I'd hope to you find a rat, or a root, or something just to break up the day.

The screen shows the address they're viewing. Not that I want to see inside my neighbors' plumbing.

TheChieftess said...

Isn't that cool technology!!! My step son is a plumber and he used a camera to look at our main line out to the sewer line to determine what was causing problems..worked like a charm!!! and isn't it nice the city was actually doing something proactive...that actually has good results!!!

Petrea said...

Yeah, I thought the technology was really great. It has implications for a lot of other things, I would think. I wonder where it was first developed: for inner space, like colonoscopy, or outer, like Mars research?

I should clarify, though: the guy told me they were hired by the Gas Company, not by the city. I think after the explosion in San Bruno, the Gas Co is being, as you say, proactive.

Amy said...

The word sewer immediately puts me up because apparently, I'm 12. But. That is really cool. I'm aware we are surrounded by technology but it surprised me to see such sophistication in a sewer truck. Even an "advanced" one. Neat!