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Smoke Testing
Purpose
smoke testing drain.JPG

The purpose of smoke testing is to find defects and faulty connections where excess rain water (Inflow) and ground water (Infiltration) can enter the sanitary sewer system, negatively effecting its economical and safe functioning. Illegal Inflow sources/connections include: sump pumps, roof and foundation drains, and storm drain cross connections. The information gained from smoke testing will help the City find and eliminate unknown sources of (I/I) entering the sanitary sewer system. Reducing I/I is an on-going City effort to help:

Comply with the Met Council Rules. The Metropolitan Council of Environmental Services (MCES) may add a demand charge to Saint Paul’s wastewater treatment bills if the excessive I/I is not removed from the system.
Maintain Health & Safety (Reduce the Risk of Sewer Back-ups and Sinkholes).
• Extend the Service Life of Public Infrastructure (Lift stations, sewer pipe, etc.)
• Reduce Wastewater Treatment Costs by reducing the amount of clear water that is treated.

Active 2014 Project Description and Area Map

Project 14-02
In August, September and October 2014, S.E.H a contractor working for the Sewer Utility will smoke test another portion of the City's sanitary sewer system. Please see the attached Project Area Map and Smoke Testing Notice that have been mailed to residents and property owners. This project is anticipated to be completed in August.

This project will address about a 1375-acre area and include such areas as those surrounding Mississippi River Blvd (Lincoln to Marshall), I-94 (Cretin to Hamline), Hamline (Saint Clair to I-94), and Saint Clair (Mississippi River Blvd to Hamline).

Effective communication with affected residents/property owners is critical to the success of this project. To that end, the following means of communication will be employed:

1. Initial Public Notice - By Mail (includes: Notice, and Project Area Map)
2. Automated Phone Call to residents/property owners notifying them of the mailing and public informational meeting.
3. Public Info Meeting (open house) on July 28, 2014 from 4:30 TO 7:00 P.M. at Merriam Park Recreation Center, 2000 Saint Anthony Ave (Saint Anthony & Wilder). 
4. Door Hanger Placement (to be placed approximately two to three days before testing occurs).
5. Automated Phone Call - A second automated phone call is to be placed 24 to 48 hours prior to smoke testing work beginning.

Also, close coordination with the St. Paul Fire Department is also essential to address the potential for false fire alarms.They will be updated on a reqular basis.

The Smoke Testing Crew chief can be contacted @ (651) 238-0572 if any simulated smoke is reported in a building.

Helpful Links
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For further information on the LiquiSmoke product used in testing our sewers, as well as material testing results regarding exposure and health please visit:

Hurco Technologies, Inc. LiquiSmoke

LiquiSmoke Material Safety Data Sheet

View our short PowerPoint presentation:

Smoke Testing Slide Presentation


Contact Information

For more information, questions or concerns about this Program, you may contact:

Girma Daka @ (651) 266-6189

Aaron Hass @ (651) 266-6171

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