Aging Pipelines and Water Supplies, the Cause of More Costly and Frequent Leaks in Municipalities

Non revenue water (NRW) is clean, treated drinking water that is delivered to the distribution system but cannot billed to customers because this water never actually reaches them; this water is instead lost. Loss can either be apparent losses, which are due to metering inaccuracies or theft, or real losses or physical losses, which are due to leaks.

According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, the United States losses about seven billion gallons of non-revenue water everyday. The American Water Works Association, however, estimates lost water to be closer to two trillion gallons daily. Only through leak detection can the water distribution system be made to comply with water conservation mandates.

In the U.S., where water supply systems are provided by municipalities to urban communities or cities, these municipalities become directly responsible for the safety, health and welfare of residents and may be held liable if residents suffer damages and losses due to acts of negligence.

Three very important municipal service are to ensure the continuous flow of clear drinking water, locate and repair leaks where these exist. Even what starts as a small puncture in a main pipe line can easily become a huge break that would spill thousands of gallons of water which could damage private commercial properties, furniture and other equipment in ground floors of buildings, sidewalks, and vehicles in parking lots and streets. Obviously, leaks that are never repaired immediately can result in very costly damages.

Due to the aging pipelines and water supplies in so many municipalities, it cannot be denied that leaks have become more costly and frequent. To help municipalities solve emergency leak problems, especially if water has gushed out continuously and has surfaced, are private firms which provide fast and effective municipal leak detection service through the use of state-of-the-art equipment capable of electronically locating leaks.

Besides helping solve emergency problems, these firms also help municipalities save cost on labor, time, materials and equipment.


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