THE HARTFORD WATERWORKS
The fifty-sixth annual report of the Water Department of Hartford, Conn., is an interesting document. With Henry Roberts as its president, the board has gone into the minatest details concerning the affairs of this branch of the city government. The receipts from all sources for the year ending March 1, 1910, were $761,616. During the year a sinking fund was created, with which to pay off the water bonds as they came to maturity, and at present this fund amounts to $185,693. All fire hydrants and drinking fountains are maintained by the water department at the nominal charge to the city of $3 per annum. The land situated on the cast side of New Park avenue, which was purchased last year to he used for the purpose of a stock yard for the storage of pipe and special castings needed in the work of the department, was laid out on plans approved by the commissioners, under the direction of its engineer, E. M. Peck. It was voted to expend $7,000 on equipping this yard with a spur track from the main line of the N. Y., N. H. & H. R. R.; also the installing of a system of overhead trolleys for the rapid and economical handling of pipe and other heavy materials. This work is now nearly completed. The rapid growth of Hartford during the last few years has made it imperative that the city should have an increased water supply. When it is decided where the new works are to be located, it will probably become necessary tor the city to authorize another bond issue, as per the amendment to the city charter, which was approved by the last legislature, June 15, 1909.
In the past year, 23,419 feet of new castiron pipe were laid. After this was put into service 9,899 feet of old pipe were abandoned, which, deducted from the above amount, leaves 13,520 feet of new mains added to the system, which, added to the 145 miles, makes a total of about 148 miles of water mains now in use. Forty-three new hydrants have been installed, making 1,183 now in the city, while the new gates set were 145, making 2,149 in all. With the 450 additional service pipes, the total number now is 11,584, while the total number of meters in use. including 414 installed last year, is 11,401.
Engineer E. M. Peck calls attention to the electrolytic condition of the city water pipes, many leaks having resulted from this cause, He treats the subject at considerable length, showing the results of many tests made by him of insulating joints installed in the piping system by the Connecticut Company. The danger district is at present concentrated in Grove street and vicinity As a remedy. Engineer Peck recommends the insulation of all service pipes close to the lead joints, which connect with the main, but adds that a still better plan would be to install wooden service pipes in such streets as are the most affected. The possibility afforde൰d for current to leave the tracks and enter the water pipes through gate valve casings may he prevented, the engineer believes, by using a box. the lower part of which is a non-conductor of electricity, like the tile used for sewer pipe.
In a leak survey, 25 service pipes and 28 hydrants were found defective and repaired. The systematic testing of water meters has been continued during the year, with excellent results. Since the 1st of March, 1909, 3,194 meters have been thus tested. In addition, there have been tested for various reasons, 233 other meters, and 423 new meters, making a grand total of tests for the year of 3,850.
The distribution system in the conflagration area has been strengthened by laying large mains Something over a mile of this work was on Main street, where conditions were particularly trying, owing to traffic of all kinds and abutting business houses. The whole business section of the city is now bisected by a large main, connected directly with the 30-inch supply main from reservoir No. 1, and the result has been a notable increase and steadiness of pressure during business hours. Engineer Peck says: “The department now has 10 Hersey detector meters in actual operation, and they continue to give excellent accounts of themselves. I am more than ever of the opinion that arrangements should be made to install one on every fire service pipe which is laid in the future.”
EXPERIMENTS WITH DRIVEN WELLS.
Fearing a shortage of water, experiments were conducted with 2-inch driven wells, to ascertain if a temporary supply could be obtained. Most of the wells were driven in a sand bar in the bed of the Connecticut river, just above the Highland division railroad bridge; a few of them were driven in _____erside park in a swale. The total number of wells was 18, and their depth varied from 4.5 feet to 48.5 feet. The best results were obtained with wells about 15 feet deep. A small steam pump was set up, and operated night and day for testing the flows, which in some cases amounted to 45 gallons per minute. When first drawn, this water was clear, cool and sparkling, with a slight odor of sulphuretted hydrogen; but analysis showed it to be so highly impregnated with iron as to be ractically worthless for domestic purposes. A supply of water from driven wells being unavailable. attention was turned to bleaching powder, as a possible solution of the problem, in connection with Connecticut River water, the use of which was practically the only alternative in case the reservoirs failed. Within two or three years this chemical has come into prominence as a germicide in the purification of water, particularly as an adjunct to mechanical filtration. The entire supply of Jersey City, N. J.—upward of 40,000,000 gallons per day—is treated with the powder only. The experiments showed that when one part per million of available chlorine was used, the removal of bactria was always greater than 99.5 per cent., and the colon bacillus was not found in the treated water. The cost of thus treating water is less than $1 per million gallons. It is now possible for Hartford, therefore, to meet the exigency of a famine with water from which the elements of serious danger have been eliminated..
James A. Newlands, consulting chemist, says: “It is not to be assumed that the treatment of Connecticut river water with calcium hypochlorite will produce an effluent satisfactory in every detail from a hygienic stand point. I believe, however, that the results obtained in these tests justify the conclusion that the treatment of this water with calcium hypochlorite will produce an effluent free from typhoid germs and with a bacterial removal averaging more than 99.5 per cent. This is as great an efficiency as is obtained with the best practical filters. Although the results of the tests would seem to indicate that the above efficiency could he obtained by the use of chemical equivalent to an available chlorine of about 1 part per million, I believe it would be advisable in practical treatment to run as closely as possible to 1.5 parts per million, in order to allow for fluctuations in the rate of pumping and changes in the organic content of the river water due to rains, the effect of tides at the intake, etc. In conclusion, I would say that this method is not advised as a permanent method of purification without filtration, as the greatest care is necessary in such a process to eliminate chances of error in adding the chemical, and the physical appearance of the water is not affected. As an emergency measure, however, I believe that satisfactory results may be obtained.”
Morrill, Wis., population 10,000, is talking of bonding itself for a $200,000 water system.
Meter System at New Haven.
The use of a general meter system for New Haven, Conn., instead of the flat rate generally in vogue there, would mean a much greater degree of economy in the consumption of water, according to the theories of water company offic_____als recently made public in a New England newspaper. In water parlance, New Haven is not a metered city, for the number of meters in use there is small, when compared with the number of services. Most all manufacturing plants are metered, and quite a number of houses, the total number of meters in use now being about eighteen hundred, while the total number of services to which water is supplied is in the neighborhood of thirty thousand.
For a small use of water the use of the meter approximates the Hat rate, but where there are excessive uses of water, the meter rate is the cheaper.
Hartford has become a metered city, and Worcester and Providence have been able to save a great deal of their water by the introduction of compulsory meters, and the cost to the consumer is no greater than before. The proble_____ before all water companies nowadays is not get more water, but to conserve the supply the now own. A luxurious use of water by an ind_____ vidual will approximate thirty gallons a day. thirty days, therefore, he would use one thousan_____ gallons, which would cost him 18 cents, and the average number in the family is five—whi_____ is about the average in New Haven—the month_____ rate would be 90 cents, which would he $______ a year. In this is includeed the use of a bat_____ and one closet and the usual household uses fro_____ one sink. Where hose is used, the consumptio_____ increases very rapidly, and of course the mrt_____ registers the excess, but this is equalized by th_____ non-use of hose in winter.
Water companies usually welcome applicatio_____ for meters because there is no contention b_____ twen the company and the consumer: the amou_____ of the water bill is just what the consumer mak_____ it. He can save or he can waste, but what registered, whether used or wasted, must be pai_____ for. There must also be a minimum rate for metered service in order to insure income enoug_____ to care for the plant; in New Haven this is pra_____ tically $9 a year or an allowance for a family c_____ about 50,000 gallons a year. This means abo_____ 28 gallons per day per individual, or a luxurio_____ one. The meters are usually very accurate sa_____ when they become full of sediment they regist_____ less than the water passing through them; t_____ register more than passes through them is pra_____ tically impossible.
It was stated by the company that where family rate was less than $15 a year there usually but little saving by using the meter; the are very few instances where the minimum ra_____ is not exceeded when hose is usd. The schedu_____ or flat rate is theoretically the same as the mete_____ ed rate, but as no two families use exactly same amount of water the difference in t_____ meter bills register the individual requiremen_____ in the uses of water. The only valid objecti____ to a meter from the standpoint of the consum is that the meter registers all the water th_____ passes through it, and if the fixtures leak or water is wasted, the bill shows just what is t_____ waste. It would probably be a fair statement th_____ if New Haven was all metered, the consutnpti_____ would he cut down by half. It is waste and n_____ legitimate consumption that compels additio_____ _____o the supply: meters cut down the waste becau_____ the waste increases the water bill.
Water Supply at Newark.
Newark, N. J., draws its water supply from t_____ Pequannock Valley watershed, twenty-six mi_____ from the city, and that the supply comes throu_____ nine reservoirs, having a maximum storage cap_____ ity of 9,923,500,000 gallons. The city’s avera_____ daily water supply is 50,000,000 gallons, the av_____ age daily consumption being 35,000,000 gallons, approximately 100 gallons per capita of popu_____ tion. The city has 352 miles of water mains a 2,752 fire hydrants, and water is supplied un_____ two systems of pressure, one for ordinary p_____ poses ranging from 25 to 75 pounds, and t_____ other designed for fire fighting, ranging from to 160 pounds. The water supply plant, the bo_____ explains, is the property of Newark and has c_____ $11,957,000.