Smoke tests may set off alarms in certain homes

As instituted by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Regions (MAMH), the City of Sainte-Thérèse has the obligation to detect and eliminate reversed connections in the municipal wastewater collection network. A reverse connection is defined as a connection or defect in equipment that allows sanitary wastewater to flow away from a domestic sewer system, either into a storm sewer system, on the ground, in a ditch or in a watercourse, while the building concerned is served by a domestic sewer system.

Smoke testing

Thus, the City of Sainte-Thérèse commissioned the firm Simo Management inc. in order to detect reversed connections on its territory. To do this, the firm will inject smoke into the sewer pipes in certain sectors of the city. As the sector identified is limited, the citizens concerned will receive a communication delivered directly to their homes to inform them. The tests will take place during the month of April and at the beginning of May 2022, weather permitting. The tests are of short duration, approximately 30 minutes.

The smoke cartridges give a non-toxic white smoke that does not leave any residue or debris. However, people with respiratory problems may still be bothered by inhaling the smoke. The injected smoke is not likely to enter homes, except in certain cases. If necessary, the introduction of smoke into a residence is generally done through the basement, from a drain or a foundation drain collection well. If this smoke enters residences, it can set off the smoke alarm. The city notifies the residents that if the smoke enters their house or basement, they should immediately notify the representative of the firm or the municipality who will be present outside.

To reduce the risk of introducing smoke into their residence, owners must ensure that the floor drain in the basement contains water and, if necessary, pour water into it. If smoke enters the house or basement, simply close the drain opening with a damp cloth pad. Smoke can also enter the house through the washer outlet pipe. It is therefore recommended to close the opening with a damp cloth whenever possible and to ventilate the house by opening the windows.

Taking exterior photos

Considering that the places through which the smoke escapes are often numerous and that these tests are of short duration, each of the sources of smoke must be photographed for report and compilation purposes. The city must therefore go to the back of a residence to obtain a favorable angle for taking photographs and asks for the resident’s cooperation so as not to interfere with the progress of the work.

Before, during and after the study, residents can obtain all relevant information at the following telephone numbers: 450 646-1903, ext. 2238 or 438 364-6775.