Saving Solution

An innovative vacuuming technique helps a Washington State sewer and water district restore a plugged gravel filter to quality performance
Saving Solution
Eastsound Sewer and Water staff devised a plan to push a 6-foot-tall by 2-foot-diameter cylinder into the gravel while applying vacuum to fluff the gravel and draw the sludge into the truck for disposal.

The Eastsound Sewer and Water District operates a small (15,000 gpd) recirculating gravel filter system on Orcas Island, Wash. — one of two treatment facilities that serve separate small communities.

When the filter became plugged with sludge after many years through the normal...

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