BAYONNE, NJ - The introduction of new technology by Suez-Bayonne has led to an 83 percent decrease in blocked sewer lines across the city from the first six months of 2019 to the same time period this year, local and utility officials announced in a Monday press release.

According to the statement the “innovative acoustic technology” called the Sewer Line Rapid Assessment Tool (SL-RAT), allows Suez-Bayonne, by setting up transmitters in manholes that send acoustic waves through the pipe, to determine whether there are restrictions to the flow in the pipes that would indicate that a blockage has formed.  

Once Suez-Bayonne locates a blockage, the statement continued, a preventative pipe cleaning operation, called jetting, a process by which a highly pressurized stream of water is sent into the pipe thus breaking down the blockage and restoring the pipe to its original operating condition, is undertaken.

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Since January, only eight blockages, often caused by a number of factors including aging infrastructure, root intrusion into the sewers, and the accumulation of detergent and grease in the system from our homes, restaurants, bars and industry, have been reported. There were 47 similar episodes in the first half of 2018.

“These blockages are very problematic, because they can lead to sewer overflows in homeowners’ basements, and clogged sewers force rainwater to puddle on the street instead of being carried away by the sewer system,” Suez officials said.

“The City of Bayonne has been concerned about sewer blockages for years; street litter, mud and disposable wipes which are not really flushable do not belong in our system and are a constant concern,” Municipal Services Director Tim Boyle said.

“Many cities deal with blockages in aging sewer systems. Bayonne is one of them,” Mayor Jimmy Davis said.  “We hope this new technology will lead to a continuing improvement in the sewer system in the years ahead.”

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