With $2 million in sewer lift station reconstruction — which included electronic improvements — comes the need for computer support. The reconstruction, performed about two years ago, means Fenton's seven lift stations operate well on their own and problems can be resolved via computer over a phone line, said Department of Public Works (DPW) Director Daniel Czarnecki.
It's through a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisiton (SCADA) computer system, which includes Multitrode software.
The city is very fortunate to have the new system set up, because it had so many sewer backups in the past, Mayor Sue Osborn said.
In addition, it saves city employees time. The lift stations have backup generators, and the computer system automatically notifies DPW employees if problems occur, City Manager Lynn Markland said. Before the upgrade, when an electrical failure happened, the DPW needed to send staff out with generators to the lift stations that were affected.
In addition, Czarnecki said the DPW staff can use a computer to see how each lift station is operating and make changes as needed. They can correct problems with too much or not enough flow, pump issues, etc. without visiting the lift station. And they can get an idea of what other problems are, before going out to fix them.
On Monday, council approved $6,950 for Kennedy Industries, of Milford, to provide another year of computer support for the lift station SCADA system. Kennedy Industries is Fenton's local contact, which works with the Multitrode software firm in Florida as needed, Czarnecki said.
The $2 million in lift station reconstruction, which took place around two years ago, is financed with a low-interest loan from the state, and grant money, Markland said.