Moermond: St. Paul Regional Water Services. As I look at the bills I can give you the
last 5. July 5 was $2,431. August 2 was $3,530. September 2, $2,841. October, with
the spike October 3, $8,872. November 2, $5,081. So we do have another pretty high
bill also in November.
Tronson: your typical Sloan valve, or urinal or toilet without a tank. If you flush and
hold it down they run between 25 and 35 gallons per minute. A 24-hour period of that
running at 25 gallons a minute is 1,500 gallons an hour. 36,000 gallons in a day.
Anderson: I can probably agree with that for the November bill. But September the
only real spike was that day, in that period.
Tronson: if you look at the hourly reading sheet we sent over, I remember a number
of 670-some odd cubic feet in an hour?
Anderson: I can understand that but if there was hardly anyone in the building—
Tronson: was your building the same occupancy in March?
Anderson: yes, more than likely on a Friday. Occupancy grew throughout the year,
starting in March. That gradual increase is noted, but on our biggest day we have
about 30% occupancy at most. For us to go from $2,500 to $8,000 is a big jump,
especially because we were trending down some in occupancy.
Tronson: the spike you refer to the day of the main break: your building drained. Your
building filled. If you had to guess, how many gallons of water would you say are in
Anderson: I wouldn’t have a guess. I suppose it could have drained through an
Moermond: the difference in the bill and how much water would have to pass through
in order to refill—do some math for me here.
Tronson: let’s just say their building holds 10,000 gallons. In a piece of 1 in copper,
20 feet long, I believe there is about 5 gallons of water in it. If you take your whole
building, called it 10,000 gallons and divide that by 748, that’s only 13 units of water
to fill the building. Billing units that you are charged for. If your building drained
throughout the day of the main break from either the toilets hanging open and it
drained or the building used that much water and had to fill back up, the bill should
only have gone up 13 units of water if that was the only problem in the building. 13
units you wouldn’t even have blinked an eye because it is under $100.
Anderson: this is why my initial question is when we drain the building we get a lot of
air back in the system. When you got that isolated and the building was back to full
pressure isn’t there an abundance of air and cr@p in the lines that could cause this
meter to spin to do that?
Tronson: if you look at that data log your building used water every hour on August
26. Before the pipe broke the meter was moving forward, after it broke the building
was taking in water. That means you lost pressure but not total pressure. The meter
was still moving forward. The water is flowing towards the break. It goes past your
building, going towards the break. There is no air in the line, all the air is going out the
break. Similar to if we turned a hydrant on in the building, there would still be no air in
Anderson: that’s basically---it is just a lot of water.
Tronson: I’ve done this enough to say that you have a Sloan toilet that is hanging