Utility Technologies, under contract with the Norris Water Commission (NWC), will be conducting smoke
tests in your neighborhood soon. This work is tentatively planned for the first two weeks in October assuming we have dry weather. These tests were originally planned for summer but with the unseasonably wet weather, the tests were postponed. This testing is part of the ongoing NWC’s Sanitary Sewer Evaluation Survey. Smoke testing is the most cost-effective method to specifically detect leaks within our sewer collection system and identify sources of surface water inflow & infiltration (I&I). Smoke testing identifies sections of the sewer collection system that have defects such as cracks, leaks or faulty connections that allow stormwater to enter the system. I&I is Norris’ biggest wastewater issue and the NWC’s #1 priority.
The smoke generated during these tests should not enter your home if your home plumbing is in proper
condition. You may see smoke coming from the roof vents, and this is a normal. In most cases, any smoke
that enters a home is through faulty plumbing or through fixtures which are not regularly used. Therefore, we request that you pour water into all infrequently used fixtures to ensure all the traps are full of water. These include baths, sinks, toilets, floor/basement drains, and washing machine drains. If smoke does enter your home, you may report it to the crews working nearby or notify the Norris Fire Department at 865-494-0881. Opening of doors and windows should quickly dissipate the smoke. If desired, the crew can do a quick inspection of your home to locate the problem area in your plumbing.
The smoke being used is made specifically for this purpose. It appears white and has a slight odor of mineral oil. It is not a fire hazard and leaves no residue. The smoke is non-toxic to humans, pets, and plants. Persons with respiratory conditions, however, such as asthma or bronchitis should leave their residence if smoke enters their home. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause. Contact JD Johnson with Utility Technologies at 865-606-1878 should you have any questions regarding these tests. Additional questions may be directed to Tony Wilkerson, NWC Water Supervisor at (865) 494-7645.