Nebraska City Uses Sonar Tool to Assess Sewer Lines

BELLEVUE, Neb. (AP) — A city in eastern Nebraska is using a musical instrument of sorts as a sewer line rapid assessment tool to help figure out how much money the city will need to repair and maintain its sewers.

The Omaha World-Herald reports that the SL-Rat transmitter is the first tool used to assess Bellevue’s aging sewers. The sonar-like technology emits and listens to the tones. City workers then evaluate the sewer pipe and give a score between zero and 10, zero being a blocked pipe and 10 being a clean one.

If the transmitter determines that a line is blocked or in poor condition, city workers have to go back and figure out what’s causing the problem.

Councilman Pat Shannon says Bellevue is potentially looking at an $80 million city-wide problem.

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