Jeff Kile, of Insituform Technologies Inc., prepares to lower Brian Bowers into a manhole in Hartmann Drive north of Baddour Parkway. According to City Engineer Chuck Boyett, the company has been contracted to repair many of the older, clay-based sewage pipes all across the city. The company installs a flexible, plastic-covered felt sleeve into the old pipes and then passes steam through them. The steam activates a chemical reaction within the lining, causing it to conform perfectly to the inside of the old lines and harden, essentially creating a new pipe inside the old one. Crews were able to repair approximately 600 feet of sewer lines Tuesday between Winter Drive and Canal Street on Hartmann. The alternative would be to dig up all the old pipes and put in new ones, a job that would take weeks to complete and cost significantly more than the Insituform process. Boyett said the city is trying to repair any old lines between Canal Street and Coles Ferry Boulevard before they resurface that stretch of road sometime this fall.
ZACK OWENSBY / The Wilson Post