Ice Pigging: New Water, Sewer Pigging Method Offers Unique Benefits

By Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor | January 2013, Vol. 68, No. 1
Ice exiting the water main through the dechlorination box. It just shows how dirty the ice is after pigging operations.

“From a social and economic standpoint, there is no risk of excavation that would damage landscaping or create expense to the water system,” he added. “Due to the short project duration, there is no need for temporary service lines and that added cost.”

The future for ice pigging in North America is great, he said.

“We are prepared to work with stakeholders on projects where ice pigging is a good fit,” said Ervin. “We are endeavoring to establish relationships with general contractors in the pipe cleaning industry, consulting engineers who may design these projects and directly with end-users. We have the capabilities to design and engineer these projects with professional engineers licensed in over 35 states. Recently joining our staff is Ice Pigging Project Manager Paul Treloar, who came from the U.K. and Aqualogy, the worldwide license holder for ice pigging. Paul has completed ice pigging services across the globe for the past 2½ years.”

Utility Service Company is a subsidiary of Suez Environment North America. Established in 1963, Utility Service is best known as a major provider of full service potable water tank asset management programs offering a full range of distribution system maintenance and management programs in most of the contiguous 48 U.S. states.

Utility Service Company, (800) 223-3695,

[inline:=This picture from Stokes County, NC, shows pre and post pig – a section of pig cut out before and after the operation showing the effectiveness of the pig to remove the film on the pipe. The customer had flushed the area prior to the pigging which could not remove the film.]
North Carolina Project

To address problems with odor and taste in Stokes County, NC, drinking water, Utility Service Co. employed ice pigging to clean approximately 17,500 linear feet of six-inch diameter PVC water main, said Kirt Ervin, P.E., Utility Service vice president of water quality.

“The county Water & Sewer Authority obtained quotes for both swabbing and ice pigging,” said Ervin. “Costs were nearly identical for each technology. Ice pigging was selected based on shorter project duration, limited involvement required of county personnel, less water demand and lower operational risks.”

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