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National Public Works Week feature: Underground utilities crew

Editor’s note: This is the second of three stories this week focusing on the City’s public works teams and the people on those crews who help make Hilliard a great community!

Have you ever thought about where your sewer waste goes once it leaves your house? All that waste goes through a system of underground pipes that carry sewage from bathrooms, sinks, kitchens, and other plumbing components to a wastewater treatment plant in Columbus where it is filtered, treated and discharged.

Sound complicated? That’s why the City of Hilliard has an underground utilities crew, led by Dave Denney, that ensures all the sanitary and storm sewers in the City are functioning correctly.

Dave’s crew takes pride in maintaining these utilities so residents don’t have to. In addition to working on the sewers, their day-to-day responsibilities include maintaining retention ponds, servicing fire hydrant pumps, managing sanitary lift stations to pump out sewer from the City, and fixing street catch basins to drain excess rainwater.

The underground utilities crew is also responsible for the City’s fleet, which includes maintenance of trucks, equipment and salt brine systems. Many of these items are serviced in-house.

“Our crew does what it takes to keep the city moving,” said Denney. “That could mean ensuring the snowplows are drivable before a big storm or preventing a messy sewer backup.”

In addition to the crew’s primary responsibilities, there are also everyday tasks that all crews are expected to take care of, such as picking up trash and debris, maintaining signs in the right of way (areas between the road and sidewalk), snow and ice control, and leaf collection.

“There’s a lot of satisfaction in fixing an issue for a resident,” said Denney. “One of the best parts about this job is that we go home every night knowing we made a difference in the community.”

If you see a Hilliard public work employee in your neighborhood – whether it be this week or next month – please say “hello” and thank them for the work they do to maintain the City.

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