The Severn Trent Services brilliant blockage busters

The Network Logistics team in Severn Trent Services prides itself on keeping pipes blockage free.

Responsible for the free flow of private wastewater networks nationwide, they believe their enviable blockage performance results from proactively monitoring the sewers and being armed with the right tools, fleet, data intelligence, and expertise.

Regional Service Delivery Manager, Ryan Turton, said: “If you’ve ever had the misfortune to experience a blockage at your property, or even worse, a sewer flood – you’ll know how awful it can be.

“That’s why we do everything possible to ensure it never happens. And on the rare occasions it does, we treat it like an emergency because, to our customers, it is. That’s one of the reasons our Net Promoter Score (NPS) remains high.”

A new jet vac joins the pack

Jet vac tankers are an essential part of the Severn Trent Services fleet.

Gareth Jones, Lily Carrington, and Deborah Tierney

A specialised vehicle, they’re designed to blast through blockages using high-pressure water jets and remove waste using vacuum technology. The waste is then transported to a recycling plant for green energy production. Recently, a new 18,000-litre jet vac tanker arrived, which will be operated by Severn Trent Services’ first female jet vac driver, Lily Carrington. The new jet vac tanker and the addition of Lily are set to deliver a great return on investment.

Lily says: “This jet vac tanker can clear away large volumes of rag, debris, and sludge from various wastewater assets, including cesspits, septic tanks, sewer pipes, wet wells, pumping stations, and drainage systems.

“I’m very proud to be the first female behind the wheel!”

Brilliant blockage prevention activities

The jet vac tankers are used for both reactive and proactive blockage-busting jobs. However, a significant amount of work is done to prevent blockages from happening in the first place.

Ryan explains: “We proactively look for blockages – or future blockages – via our planned preventative maintenance programme. Or PPM for short.

“Network data could indicate a potential problem in our customer’s wastewater assets. We might respond by doing a CCTV survey to inspect non-conformities like cracked or undulating pipes.

“Our proactive work can result in us fixing or replacing an asset, for example. Or deploying a jet vac tanker to clean it and remove build-up.”

Prevention through education

Severn Trent Services employees also speak to local schoolchildren about sewer misuse to instil positive habits from an early age.

Ryan added: “Our education team offers a range of free education services for people who belong to the communities we work in.

“They bring to life what happens when the wrong things escape down loos and plugholes so everyone can do their bit to prevent blockages.”

Read the brochure here.

About the Network Logistics team

Deborah Tierney leads the Network Logistics team in Severn Trent Services. The team are expert in coordinating and deploying solutions to tackle and overcome complex and time-critical water and wastewater challenges.         

Deborah said: “We have the skills and capabilities to proactively prevent and react to sewer network issues across various assets from pumping stations to oil interceptor tanks.

“We also respond to water distribution issues. Our fleet of water tankers can inject high volumes of water into networks when there’s a loss of supply.”