The article states that many water towers have been left to fester, sometimes making people sick. The federal EPA has been looking into uniform regulations for years.
When is the last time you took a look inside your water storage tank? Our company “RON PERRIN WATER TECHNOLOGIES, INC.” inspects about 800 tanks a year. Every week we find a tank or two that have never been cleaned. According to this article published in USA TODAY May. 21, 2021, by Kyle Bagenstose, there are also tanks that are seldom if ever inspected too.
In March of last year, residents in the small coastal community of Delray Beach, Florida, noticed something strange about the water coming from their taps.
It was discolored. Smelly. Flecked with bits of dirt.
“You looked at it, and it wasn’t clean,” resident Reeve Bright said. “You started seeing the ice coming out of the ice maker, and you’re going, ‘What the heck is going on? There is stuff in the frozen water.’”
Complaints to the city prompted the discovery of sediment that had accumulated inside one of the city’s massive water storage tanks. The sediment had traveled along with the water into cups, cookware, ice trays, and bathtubs.
It wasn’t a freak occurrence or the result of some unavoidable problem. An investigation found no records that the tank had ever been cleaned since it was built.
I have been a Water Tank Inspection Contractor for over 30 years. Starting in 1991, my first inspections were done on my days off while still working as a full-time Texas Peace Officer. I was a principal at Tank Diver Inspections (TDI) a startup company that failed. Form 1994 to 96 I was director of marketing at U.S. Underwater Services in 96 I was promoted to Director of Operations. In 1997 I established Ron Perrin Water Technologies and devoted myself to developing the best methods to inspect and clean potable water storage tanks with NO DISRUPTION in water service. We incorporated in 2020. We offer the best inspection in the industry. We are here to serve you! We offer three different water storage tanks inspections, all include underwater documentation with our underwater video cameras and lighting systems.
Our Company provides nondisruptive water tank inspections on potable water storage tanks in Texas and 14 other states. In Texas, our tank inspections meet all requirements found under Texas Administrative code 290.46 (m)(1) -Each of the system’s ground, elevated, and pressure tanks shall be inspected annually by water system personnel or contracted inspection service. We want to be your Contracted Inspection Service.
In Texas you must examine your ground, elevated, and pressure storage tanks at least once every year to make sure they are in good working condition. Tanks should be inspected no later than one year after the last time you checked them.
Ground and elevated tanks are required to be inspected inside and out every year. Pressure tanks also need to be inspected on the outside every year and if they have an inspection port they are required to have the interior inspected once every five years. The grounds and facilities shall be maintained in a manner so as to minimize the possibility of the harboring of rodents, insects, and other disease vectors, and in such a way as to prevent other conditions that might cause the contamination of the water. (1) Each of the system’s ground, elevated, and pressure tanks shall be inspected annually by water system personnel or contracted inspection service. (A) Ground and elevated storage tank inspections must determine that the vents are in place and properly screened, the roof hatches closed and locked, flap valves and gaskets provide adequate protection against insects, rodents, and other vermin, the interior and exterior coating systems are continuing to provide adequate protection to all metal surfaces, and the tank remains in a watertight condition.
It is extremely important these facilities be properly inspected, we recently inspected a ground storage tank that had a damaged vent screen, inside on the floor of the tank we found two dead rats. Not what you want in a water tank that you are drinking out of. Birds and insects are much more common, it there is a hole in the vent screen that you can put your finger in you can bet there are insects in the tank. It the hole is big enough to put your fist in there is a good chance you will find a dead bird. On a hot day, the animals can smell the water if there is a way for them to get it they will. Like a big lobster trap they can get in but they can’t get out. Let’s take a look at your tanks!
We have several inspections to choose from:
Remote Underwater Video – This is is our most popular and economical inspection. We document all State required inspection points. Our report is delivered in a notebook with photographs of inspection points and an underwater video that covers the interior roof, water surface, waterline and underwater areas visible from our remote underwater camera and lighting system.
Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV)- Covers everything above with additional underwater video taken from one of our ROV’s. This allows you to get a more detailed inspection for much larger facilities. It also allows a customer to get great documentation on specific areas if needed.
Diver Inspection– Our potable water dive crew is usually reserved to clean water storage tanks and towers. The divers are sealed in their own environment using a DRY SUIT. No part of the divers body touches the water in addition, to meet state and federal requirements divers are washed down with a 200ppm chlorine solution. Divers are able to get an even more detailed inspection.
Tank Cleaning and Inspection– All of our inspections include an underwater video of tank floors. This allows us to get a good estimate of accumulated sediment. It is important to know how much sediment is in the tank. Sediment on the floor of the tank that can be a safe habitat for bacteria, protozoa and even viruses. Our cleaning service removes all loose sediment. After the sediment is removed we are able to see the floor of the tank allowing us to document the condition of the paint and see corroded areas if any. When is the last time your tanks were cleaned?
If you are task with inspecting your own tank we can help with that too. I teach a course at the Environmental Training Institute (ETI) located at the UT Arlington Division for Enterprise Development. The class is 16 hours over two days and has class dates scheduled in 2021 and 2022.
Escherichia coli, commonly referred to as E. coli, is in a group of organisms known as coliforms: common bacteria found in the digestive system of humans and animals.
There are only a few strains that cause serious disease in humans. One of these strains is responsible for causing Traveler’s diarrhea, and the second is E. coli O157:H7, which contaminates meat and leafy vegetables.
The “O157:H7” strain has caused serious hemorrhagic diarrhea and for some, long-term complications resulting in illness and even death in some cases.
The presence of E. coli is used as an indicator to monitor the possible presence of other more harmful microbes, such as Giardia, Shigella, Norovirus and the Protozoa Cryptosporidium. Diseases resulting from contact with water contaminated by E. coli can cause gastrointestinal illness, skin, ear, respiratory, eye, neurologic, and wound infections. The most commonly reported symptoms are diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, and low-grade fever. When E. coli exceeds the permissible level in recreational water, it results in the closing of public swimming pools and fishing areas.
Some possible sources of fecal contamination include wildlife, agricultural runoff, or runoff from areas contaminated with livestock manure, wastewater treatment plants, or private septic systems. Heavy rain may cause organisms to be washed into waterways, lakes, or groundwater. If contaminated water is then used as a source of drinking water and is not treated, or is inadequately treated, it may result in illness.
When this contaminant makes its way into a drinking water system sediment found on the bottom of water storage tanks can provide a safe habitat. E. coli along with other bacteria and pathogens, can find shelter from disinfectants under the soft sediment that accumulates in storage tanks.
The best way to insure that E. coli or other bacteria will not invade your tank sediment is to remove it. Clean your water storage tanks then maintain them by getting them on a cleaning schedule.
Since 1997 Ron Perrin Water Technologies, Inc. has been a leader in the inspection and cleaning of water storage tanks and towers. Our inspection methods cover all state required inspection points. We also include a video produced by a underwater camera and lighting system that are able to properly inspect the interior floors of your facilities to determine sediment levels. We do all of this with no disruption in service and no water loss.
Our potable water dive team can keep your tanks clean with no disruption in service and minimal water loss. When sediment is removed the habitat that allows bacteria and other contaminants to remain in your tank is also gone. This allows the disinfectants like chlorine to do a much more effective job. Our customers report to us that they use less chlorine, after their tanks are cleaned to meet standards. For more information go to: www.ronperrin.com, send an e-mail to email@example.com or call 817-377-4899 for a quote today.
E. coli – CDC –Escherichia coli (abbreviated as E. coli) are bacteria found in the environment, foods, and intestines of people and animals. E. coli are a large and diverse group of bacteria. Although most strains of E. coli are harmless, others can make you sick. Some kinds of E. coli can cause diarrhea, while others cause urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and pneumonia, and other illnesses.
Sep 26, 2020 Texas residents warned of tap water tainted with brain-eating microbe. Texas officials have warned residents of some communities near Houston to stop using tap water because it might be tainted with a deadly brain-eating microbe.
The Guardian Reported:
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) warned the Brazosport Water Authority late on Friday of the potential contamination of its water supply by Naegleria fowleri.
The commission issued an advisory warning people not to use tap water for any reason except to flush toilets in Lake Jackson, Freeport, Angleton, Brazoria, Richwood, Oyster Creek, Clute and Rosenberg.
Those communities are home to about 120,000 people. Also affected are the Dow Chemical works in Freeport, which has 4,200 employees, and the Clemens and Wayne Scott state prison units, which have 2,345 inmates and 655 employees.
The advisory will remain in place until the Brazosport authority’s water system has been thoroughly flushed and tests on water samples show the system’s water is safe to use. It said in a statement that it was unclear how long it would be before the tap water was safe.
See the full story here:
With everything going on last year I missed this story. My take on this story is one of the reasons I got into diving water tanks in the first place. To explain why this story made me think about how I came to build a company that puts divers into water storage tanks I need to tell you something about myself and even about my parents.
In the early 1990s I was working as a Texas police officer, and my passion was SCUBA Diving. My love of SCUBA Diving goes back even farther. My dad was Charles B. Perrin, he passed in 2016 at the age of 78. He claims to have purchased the first Aqua-Lung in Fort Worth in the mid 1950’s. He had to order it from a welding supply long before the first SCUBA store opened in Texas. Both my mom and dad spent time water-skiing and SCUBA diving on Possum Kingdom Lake (PK) west of Fort Worth on the Brazos River. They were both civil servants: my dad worked for the IRS and my Mom was an Executive for the Corps of Engineers. Raising their family in the 60’s-80″s this solid middle class income gave them enough extra money to not only afford to give us a great middle class lifestyle, it also allowed them to purchase a second home, something that seems out of reach for most of us today.
They purchased a lake house on Possum Kingdom Lake (PK) where I spent most of the weekends of my youth. Even before they purchased the first lake property my dad had taken me out to PK in a small fishing boat with his one set of Scuba Gear and instructed me how to SCUBA dive. In 1971, I was 12 years old. The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) was not even founded until 1966. My dad predated standard training practices that would come along after his diving years were done. With no formal courses available my parents taught themselves how to dive with the help of “The Skin Diver” (later renamed Skin Diver Magazine). Sea Hunt starring Lloyd Bridges*, was also a favorite TV program in our home. I personally would not get formally trained and certified until the early 1980’s.
I can still remember my first dive. I was so excited. It was a clear summer day and our 14′ “Little Dude” fiberglass fishing boat was anchored in a remote area over crystal clear water about 10′ deep. I put dad’s tank, mask and fins on just like Lloyd Bridges. I checked the regulator which gave me that great scuba diving sound as cold compressed air shot into my mouth from the 72 cubic inch steel tank strapped to my back. I sat on the side of the boat and dad explained to me how to make entry by going over backwards.
“Hold on to your mask,” he said as he pushed me over the side. The water was cold on my hot sun soaked skin, my heart rate shot up and I was breathing was as rapid as I could breath! I was sure I was going to die as I tried to get my head above water. Turning myself around underwater I shot back to the surface with all my strength but I was stopped by my dad putting his hand on my head and holding me underwater until my breathing finally slowed down and my initial panic subsided. My dad was the worst SCUBA instructor ever! Despite that first dive experience that could best be described as violent or even brutal, I fell in love with diving. By the time I was 14 I was exploring the lake on my own spearfishing in the many coves and inlets. I never had a buddy to dive with but I always had a sharp knife in case I got tanged in an abandoned trout line that seemed to be everywhere I wanted to dive.
Growing up on the lake the brain-eating ameba Naegleria fowleri is something I have been aware of most of my life at least as far back as I can remember. Diving and Water Skiing were my favorite things to do on the lake. In late summer the river flow would slow down. The water going through the dam would be reduced and water become more stagnant. At the same time the hot summer sun warms the water. Naegleria fowleri loves warm water and in late summer Texas lake water gets very warm. I remember news stories from water skiers (usually teenaged children) getting the organism in their nose and dying from it, going back to my teenage years. When the lake level went down too low we stopped diving and water skiing.
When cooler weather arrives in mid September, Naegleria fowlerilies dormant in the sediment at the bottom of lakes and riverbeds, which is why experts advise that you not stir up any more of that sludge/sediment than necessary. First discovered in 1899, Naegleria fowleri is a protist pathogen, known to infect the central nervous system and produce primary amoebic meningoencephalitis.
In 1991 I discovered that the American Water Works Association had a standard to put scuba divers into drinking water. Using a drysuit and a full face mask, a diver could be totally isolated from the water supply. To meet the standard that has been adopted by the USEPA and TCEQ the diver must also be washed down with a 200ppm chlorine solution. Taking the tank out of service and then decontaminating the entire facility with very expensive and time consuming super chlorination procedure. Decontamination of the diver is much more economical. In addition other advantages are the diver can move around all underwater areas. Equipped with a good underwater lighting and camera system the diver can document the condition of the facility and deliver a great inspection report with no water loss or disruption in service. After I mastered diving in potable water I saw a common problem potable water tanks have – over time, sediment collects on the floor of tanks.
I read everything I could about tank sediment. In 1990 the National Drinking Water Advisory Council stated that drinking water contamination from bacteria, protozoa and viruses may be the biggest challenge for drinking water professionals in the future. The future is here, over time almost all tanks collect sediment. Tank sediment can be a safe habitat for a wide host of microbes including crypto andNaegleria fowleri.
When I ask about sediment removal I was told the standard method was a bucket and a shovel. We immediately started working on a better way. First using some methods developed for moving sand to look for treasure off-shore a much simpler method was developed by 1999. We now use a 3″ trash pump to clean most ground storage tanks and with water towers we simply use gravity to create all the suction we need to quickly remove sediment from the floor of the tank. Cleaning water storage tanks is not as common as you may think. Our company inspects over seven hundred tanks a year. Every week we find tanks that have never been cleaned. Currently there are no USEPA rules on when tanks should be cleaned. Texas has administrative rules under 290.46 requiring all potable water storage to be inspected annually. However, Texas along with most other states, have no rules on how often water storage tanks should be cleaned. The interior of water tanks often remain, “Out-of-sight and out-of-mind”.
KEEPING WATER STORAGE TANKS CLEAN IS IMPORTANT
This story is about communities on the lower part of the Brazos River that have hadNaegleria fowleriturn up in their drinking water system. The standard remediation for this is often to perform a chlorine burn that increases the chlorine to a high level. This kills all contaminants it comes into contact with. So everything on the surface in the water system that is underwater, including all tanks and water mains is sanitized. But what about the contaminants that remain hidden under a layer of sediment in the water storage tank? Administrators often are unaware of any tank sediment that may still be lurking in water storage tanks again, Out-of-sight and out-of- mind. The chlorine burn will kill all contaminants on the surface of the sediment. This is why proper tank inspections that can determine the actual sediment levels are so important. One half to three inches of sediment is very common. Without removing the sediment, contaminants remain in the tank and will continue to be a problem in the future. All water storage tanks should be on a cleaning schedule. Some tanks may need to be cleaned annually while others may be able to be on a three or five year program.
First established in 1997, Ron Perrin Water Technologies, Inc. has been a leader in the underwater inspection and cleaning of water storage tanks and towers. We offer three different inspection methods: 1) remote camera, 2) Remotely operated vehicle (ROV) and 3) Potable Water Diver. Our divers are commercially trained from great schools like The Ocean Corporation where I serve on the Educational Advisory Board. We offer diver cleaning with no disruption in service and minimal water loss on ground and elevated tanks. For standpipes over 70 feet tall we have a Robot Cleaning Service.
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*Sea Hunt is an American action adventure television series that aired in syndication from 1958 to 1961 and was popular for decades afterwards. Click Hear to watch Sea Hunt
Naegleria fowleri is responsible for the death of a 6-year-old boy in Lake Jackson, Texas, and environmental officials say the city will be fighting the pathogen for monthsTPO ARTICLE HERE.
Sediment on the interior floor of a water storage tank is a breach and can be a serious threat to pubic health. Bacteria, protozoa and even viruses have been found to use tank sediment as a safe habitat.
Keeping your tanks clean will help keep your water system safe. Are your tanks and towers on a cleaning schedule? We want to help you keep your water tanks and towers clean and healthy! Do not allow dirt that builds up on the floor of your potable water storage tanks to be a safe habitat to grow Giardia, Legionella or viruses like Norovirus. Our water tank and tower cleaning rates are affordable and we have special pricing for tiny tanks under 10,000 gallons.
Check out our new video series on YouTube. Tap-Talk explores our water distribution systems as we take you along and let you see what we see as we inspect and clean municipal water storage tanks. Our cameras let you see what is inside, we never reveal the utility we are working for or our exact location unless our customer gives us permission. Episode #1 is posted below, less than six minutes, I explain what we do and how we do it, talk about my background and what led me to start my company in 1997.
There is a serious danger lurking in many water systems. Join me, along with microbiologists and a former EPA drinking water chief as they discuss the problem. If you like this video please give us a thumbs up and SHARE it! It is important that water utility managers understand the importance of keeping water storage tanks clean. PLEASE SHARE!
Wallie is a Deep Trekker DT640VAC robot crawler we use to clean water storage tanks that have deep water. The Deep Trekker DT640 robot crawler can work it water up to 165 feet deep. To see more check out our blog at http://www.tankdiver.us. To contact our office please call 817-377-4899 or contact Robert at firstname.lastname@example.org
Want More? This video is a 15 minute look back at some of the jobs we have done over the past three years.
Be sure to check out number two in our new video series. “Tap Talk” will explore what we typically find in municipal drinking water tanks and why keeping water tanks clean is important. There is a serious danger lurking in America’s water systems. Join me, (Ron Perrin), along with microbiologists and a former EPA employee, Len Pardee, as we discuss the problem.
For several years we have been working on a feature length documentary with the working title, “Out of sight, Out of mind – What is in your water”. This episode features parts from that film. Keeping tanks clean is very important, but before you can fix a problem you must know it exists. Water tank inspections are essential to properly manage any municipal water system. Big or small, if you do not know there is a problem with your water system, you can not make plans to take care of it. Sediment builds up in almost all water systems over time. Sediment on the floor of the tank can be a breeding ground for bacteria, protozoa, viruses and a host of other contaminants. In some tanks this soft sedimentation becomes a safe habitat where contaminants can grow protected from the chlorine and other treatment chemicals. As billions of bacteria form in the sediment treatment chemicals can be depleted, causing utilities to use more and more until they reach, or exceed, legal limits.
Since 1997 Ron Perrin Water Technologies, Inc. has been a leader in the inspection and cleaning of potable water storage tanks and towers. We are based out of Fort Worth, Texas with personnel that also call Houston home.
We work in over a dozen states with the bulk of our customers located in Texas. We offer the most information for the lowest possible cost. Our most popular inspection uses a remote underwater camera. With this close look below the waterline we are able to give our customers a first hand look at their water storage facilities with no disruption in service.
For a free quote call 817-377-4899, use the free quote form on the right side of this blog or e-mail a list of your tanks to email@example.com.
Ron Perrin Water Technologies, Inc. may also be reached toll free at: 1-888-481-1768
In addition to our remote camera inspection we also offer a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) inspection and for the most detail our potable water diver crew is available.
All of our inspections cover all AWWA and State inspection requirements documented with photos of each inspection point a video that covers the exterior and interior roof and underwater areas. The remote underwater camera also called a drop camera inspection is a excellent inspection tool for smaller and mid-sized water storage facilities. The ROV is useful when specific areas need to be looked at or to get to the rear of larger facilities.
The dive crew may be the best choice if a more detailed report is needed or if additional work is needed such as tank cleaning or leek repair. We have a new service that was developed exclusively for standpipe type water storage tanks. Standpipe tanks have deeper water than most other tanks making it extremely hazardous for divers. Our cleaning robot offers a unique way to remove sediment and allow your tank to stay in-service. See our other blog post for more information and photos.
Pricing is quick and free, simply give us a call toll free at 1-888-481-1768. If you prefer using a fax just fax a list of your tanks to 817-246-1740. Be sure to include exactly what type of inspection you would like us to quote. We will need to know the gallon size of the tanks and if they are GST, EST, clear-wells (underground) or standpipe type.
If you prefer to email your request send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All Potable Water Tanks should be Inspected. This may not be the first thing water utilities think about after severe storms. With damage to utility offices and vehicles, the potable water storage tanks and towers are often overlooked. If you need your tanks and towers inspected we are here to help. Ron Perrin Water Technologies, Inc. has been inspecting tanks and towers since 1997. We use underwater video cameras so there is no disruption in your utility water service. Call 1-888-481-1768 or see www.ronperrin.us for more details.
Our business is to help water utilities keep drinking water up to standards and safe to drink. We save utilities time, and money while saving millions of gallons of treated drinking water each month (sometimes each day).
We do this by inspecting water storage tanks with remote cameras while they remain in-service and full of drinking water. If the tank or the water tower has sediment build up our potable water dive crew can remove sediment from the facility with minimal water loss and usually no disruption in service.
This process removes bacteria, protozoa, and even viruses that can live, thrive and grow in the tank sediment that builds-up on the floor of virtually every water storage facility. Your zip code should not determine how safe your municipal water is to drink.
Our remote camera inspections are very affordable and our cleaning process cost much less than draining and removing the tank from service for cleaning. Of the top eleven contaminates for municipal drinking water systems according to the CDC, our method of removing tank sediment eliminates the habitat that eight of them can use to get a foothold in water systems.
Photo: Potable Water Storage tank being cleaned by potable water dive crew.
For a quote to inspect or clean your municipal water tanks or towers give us a call toll free at 888-481-1768.
Being a human being like most of you, I have political opinions and feelings like everyone else. I try to separate my personal feelings from my business life but that is getting harder to do all the time.
Keeping your tanks clean may be more important now than ever. Sediment on the floor of your water storage tank may become an inviting habitat that allows bacteria, protozoa and even viruses to get a foothold in your water system.
Since 1997 Ron Perrin Water Technologies, Inc. has been here to help water utilities inspect and clean water storage tanks and towers. We work for everyone, every type of person with every kind of skin tone and all political stripes with equal enthusiasm. Some I agree with and some I don’t, but since I am not a politician, how my customers think is not my business.
Lately, I have had to unfriend some folks because of the hate speech they have been posting or re-posting on face-book. I do not have time for hate in my life. You may not see the world as I do and we can agree to disagree on just about everything, but I draw the line at posting hate.
Recently, even wearing a mask during a pandemic has gotten politicized. For months I have been posting photos of my crew and me wearing masks. This is not political. It is a practical way for my company to keep helping water utility companies keep their water tanks and towers inspected and clean.
If you have contact with the public in any way you should wear a mask. I hope this gets understood by everyone sooner rather than later. No matter what or how you think, we are all in this together and the sooner we come together, the sooner we will stop the spread of Covid-19.
Dig deep into your wealth of compassion for your fellow man and wear a mask in public. It doesn’t matter if you’re red or blue – it just matters that you did your part to stop the spread!