The city of Cleveland will begin a smoke test on sewer lines beginning Monday, Aug. 10.
The smoke test will be done in sections, and beginning at Ga. 115 West and Campbell Street, then going down Campbell Street to Hood Street.
“Smoke testing basically creates this type of smoke that comes through the system and will permeate through and kind of show you where your leaks are,” City Administrator Tom O’Bryant said at an Aug. 3 City Council meeting.
Cleveland Municipal Clerk Connie Tracas said that if people see smoke coming into their homes, they could call Cleveland City Hall at 706-865-2017. It was also noted the smoke is nontoxic.
O’Bryant said it’s important to find where the leaks are, because when rainwater gets into the system, it’s additional inflow into the city’s wastewater treatment system and can exceed the permitted limit. He added that the city could face fines for going over the limit set by the state Environmental Protection Division.
“The best thing we can do, and the thing the state encourages you to do, is find places of infiltration and make repairs,” O’Bryant said. “It’s cheaper in the long run. Plus, since we were working on a new wastewater treatment plant, they like the fact that we are trying to improve our collection system as well.”
Smoke tests are a standard practice, though this will be the first time Cleveland has conducted one, O’Bryant said.