PA DEP Lead and Copper Sampling Results
There is very specific protocol required by PA DEP (Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection) for water systems to sample the water from consumer’s homes on a specific frequency. The testing results of water sampling for lead and copper for public water systems are available on the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP) website: http://www.drinkingwater.state.pa.us/. To learn more information, click the following links to view the PA DEP Press Release as well as the Mount Joy Borough Authority sampling results. Please feel free to contact our office at 653-5938 or by e-mail email@example.com if you have any questions.
Lumber Street Water Tanks
Over the past year or so, some customers have raised a concern pertaining to the present condition of the Lumber Street Water Storage Tank and when the Authority intends on rehabilitating its present condition. In this article I would like to take some time and respond to our customers regarding the condition of the tank and water quality within the tank itself.
Water Quality: In the eyes of some people, they would naturally assume that the quality of water stored within the tank is a reflection of how the outside of the tank appears, this is not the case. A paint coating is applied to both the outside and inside of the tank, but the coatings are different in respect to the conditions they will be subjected to. Naturally the outside coating is subjected to various weather conditions, ultra violet rays from the sun, dirt, dust, acid rain and debris. The inside coating is only subjected to the physical characteristics of the water, which stay fairly consistent throughout the year other than temperature during the winter months, also remember that the application of paint in itself is not a deterrent of oxidation, only a means of extending the life of materials (example: carbon steel) used to contain the storage of water for distribution and just because there is a failing paint coating on the outside does not necessarily mean that the paint coating on the inside is also failing.
Condition of Paint Coatings: As part of the Authority’s preventative maintenance on any of the three water storage tanks, both the inside and outside paint coatings have been evaluated by a third party specialists. The first step in evaluating the interior paint coating is done by utilizing a ROV (robotic operated vehicle) camera system, the unit is disinfected prior to installation into the water tank and the operator can control the ROV remotely. This allows the operator to inspect the entire inside for possible flaws or failures in the paint coating system along with any other mechanical or structural deficiencies by basically swimming through the water, this system also allow the tank to remain in-service while the work is being performed. The second step in the evaluation is done by a Water Storage Tank & Coatings Consultant – QA Inspector being present while the ROV inspection is taking place and directing the ROV operator where also to look for problem issues. While on-site the consultant is also assessing the exterior paint coating from the ground and above by climbing the tank looking at the paint coatings, structural or mechanical deficiencies.
Overall Condition of Lumber Street Tank: During our last interior and exterior inspection of the tank the following was noted. Interior wet section of the tank (where the water is stored) shows little failure of the paint coating system, no interior mechanical deficiencies and no structural deficiencies. The interior paint coating system should have an expected life of approximately 7 years. Interior dry section of the tank (where the authority stores equipment) shows little failure of the paint coating system, no mechanical deficiencies and no structural deficiencies. The paint coating system on the interior dry section of the tank should have an expected life of approximately 7 years. Exterior coating system (what you see from outside looking at the tank) shows signs of rust blooms on the exterior wet chamber, these rust blooms are superficial developing from a possible contamination between the primer and steel structure but no structural deficiencies are noted. Expected life on the exterior paint coating system is 5 to 7 years.
Proposed Plan to Rehabilitate the Water Tank: The Authority has developed and instituted a Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) that addresses current and future upgrades to the water system, the rehabilitation of the existing Lumber Street Water Storage Tank is currently on the CIP but not anticipated to happen until 2019-2020. One reason this project is slated for 2019-2020 is for the new water plant which is currently being designed, to be placed into operation, affording us the ability to remove the Lumber Street Water Tank from service while still supplying our customers with an adequate supply of water with the remaining 2 water tanks and 2 water plants in-service.
The question has come up “Why something can’t be done with the tank in the meantime?” A reasonable question and hopefully this answer will satisfy the question.
- To remove the paint in spots and repaint these portions that are seeing the paint coating failure would cost approximately $125,000.00 and we would have multiple paint colors on the tank since the remaining existing paint shows fading, this paint coating would only give you a 7 to 10 year lifespan and would not address the remaining paint that would need to be done. The tank would need to be taken out of service for this work to be completed and again in the near future for the remaining work.
- To remove the paint in spots and repaint these portions that are seeing the paint coating failure and apply 2 finish coats to the entire outside, this option would cost approximately $195,000.00 and not address any of the interior painting, this paint coating would also only give you a 7 to 10 year lifespan and not address the interior dry section or interior wet section. The tank would need to be taken out of service for this work to be completed and again in the near future for the remaining work.
- Strip all exterior paint and apply a new high performance long-term coating system on the tank, this option would cost approximately $400,000.00 and have a lifespan of 25 to 30 years. This option addresses the exterior only and not the interior dry chamber or interior wet chamber. The tank would still need to come off-line in the future to address these additional chambers and if there were any structural issues that needed addressed inside the tank we would run the risk of possibly damaging the exterior paint.
- Strip all exterior paint and apply new high performance long-term coating system on both the exterior and interior portions of the tank would cost approximately $650,000.00 to $800,000.00 and have a lifespan of 25 to 30 years. This option addresses the complete tank all at the same time, reducing the need in having the tank off-line multiple times.
Out of the four options listed above number 4 appears to make the most sense when you look at the overall expected future lifespan of the tanks paint coating and the capital expenses needed to perform any of the 4 options. Since all 4 options entail that the tank needs to be taken off-line, our thought is let’s take it out of service just once, get all the work done at one time and our expectation and understanding from the professionals is that the new paint coating will last for decades to come.
I hope that this answers the question and that you as customers understand our thoughts and position in looking at how we intend on moving forward with rehabilitating the Lumber Street Water Tank. The decisions implemented by our board members and staffing are always in the best interest of our customers, balancing the needs of today with the needs of the future. In conclusion we would offer a thank you to all of our customers and look forward to meeting the current and future needs of the customers and community.
Regulations from PA DEP Regarding Water Main Breaks
There is very specific protocol required by DEP (Department of Environmental Protection www.dep.state.pa.us) when a water main break occurs. Depending on how and what type of break happens, precautionary boil notices will be put out. When you see the boil notice, there isn’t necessarily a problem, we are just following DEP protocol. Please feel free to contact our office at 653-5938 or by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you see a boil notice and have any questions.
Water and Sewer Line Insurance
Attention Customers of Mount Joy Borough Authority, we have received calls from customers that are being solicited information on purchasing insurance for their water or sewer service lines. Please be aware that MJBA has no affiliation with any Insurance or Non-Insurance company soliciting homeowners with the purchase of insurance on their water or sewer service lines. MJBA will also not take a position on the purchase or non-purchase of insurance relating to this subject. MJBA also believes that this decision falls solely on the property owner.