Wastewater FOG Control Program

Palmer Township Palmer, PA

Projects

Overview

Palmer Township, a community of approximately 21,600 in Northampton County, manages its own sewage collection system which ultimately discharges to the Easton Area Joint Sewer Authority Wastewater Treatment Plant. They had historical issues with oil and grease control in their system which resulted in liability issues related to blockages, multiple SSOs and back-ups in homes.

Taking positive steps to mitigate their challenges, Palmer Township engaged Entech to assist them with the development and implementation of a Fats, Oil and Grease (FOG) program. A custom plan was developed to address Palmer Township’s unique needs and budget.

In addition to initial program development, Entech also provides on-going program management support to the Township to help anticipate and manage future concerns.

Solution Details

When not properly disposed of, FOG enters the collection system and mixes with other wastes, causing them to congeal and harden in the pipe. Issues with FOG result in increased maintenance and treatment costs. In the case of Palmer Township, blockages and back-ups in homes caused their insurance company to ask for a mitigation plan that would address FOG in their system and therefore reduce their liability and costly collection system maintenance.

An initial review of local ordinances was completed to ensure they contained requirements for maintenance and inspection of grease traps and interceptors and included fees and fines to support enforcement of a FOG program.

Entech developed targeted hands-on training and educational materials for both local grease handling facilities as well as Palmer Township staff members responsible for inspections and enforcement.

The program included a FOG site inspection Program for food-handlers, the creation of site-specific letters outlining deficiencies in ordinance requirements, development of materials and FAQ sheets outlining Best Management Practices associated with inspections and maintenance of grease traps and interceptors, providing information for Posting on the Township’s website, and the development of a grease hauler education program.

To effectively and efficiently manage the inspection schedule, correspondence, facility compliance, and hauler details, a data management system was developed and implemented to meet the needs of the program. The system allows for users to utilize the information in the field and develop and send needed correspondence from one platform.

These efforts will reduce Palmer Township’s liability and reduce maintenance and treatment costs for their system. In addition, it will foster valuable relationships with local property owners, plumbers and local grease handlers.

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