Published October 31st, 2018
Moraga's storm drain maintenance preparations
By Vera Kochan
As the rainy season approaches, it was no surprise to see a Storm Drain Operations and Maintenance Program presentation during the Oct. 24 town council meeting. Edric Kwan, Moraga's public works director, stressed the importance of taking preventive measures to insure minimal future costs to the town.

Moraga has a storm drain system involving 27 miles of pipe and 2,000 related structures. These antiquated facilities are 45-60 years old and have undergone very limited maintenance. Storm sewers, sewer mains and water mains, not to mention underground electrical phone/cable lines and gas mains, operate in a complex network beneath the town.

In order to repair and maintain this system, proactive steps have begun and need to continue. Video inspections perform condition assessments and identify maintenance repairs to prolong pipe life. To remove existing sediment and debris (mud, rocks and trash) a vacuum truck clears out pipes before localized flooding problems can occur. Pipes with holes can be lined with trenchless technologies like Cured-In-Place Pipe, or CIPP. Any corroded bottoms will have inverts resurfaced with concrete to maintain water flow. Finally, buckled pipes can be spot repaired by removing and replacing sections of the damaged pipe.

Inspections (through manholes, inlets, outfalls, etc.) and closed-circuit television videos of pipeline are expected to be complete in five years. The next step would be to prioritize the maintenance repairs.

At this point in time, Moraga's Storm Drain Operation and Maintenance Program is fully funded. The program's elements of video inspection, sediment/debris removal, technical assistance, maintenance repair and asset management software comes to $254,400. Project costs for 2019 are $170,000. Any costs to continue the program into the future remain at a steady $170,000. Preventative maintenance, in the long run, is cost effective.

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Copyright Lamorinda Weekly, Moraga CA