FORT SMITH (KFSM) - Crews with the city's utility department will be on on the north side of town Tuesday (July 21) testing the underground sewer systems. While it's just routine maintenance, the work could cause some homeowners to worry.
The way the test works is that crews blast smoke through the underground sewer system specifically looking for any holes or erosion that may have happened over the the past year.
What crews are looking for is any kind of smoke coming out of the ground. This would alert crews to either a needed clean out or main line break in that part of the sewer system.
Fort Smith firefighters said these routine tests work to prevent overloading the city's sewage system and also helps maintain it for the future.
Even though there's no safety hazards for area residents, firefighters said they tend to get several calls while the testing is going on. The calls are from homeowners who are worried their house could be on fire.
"It can even come up through your toilet, a sink, or under a sink," said Fort Smith Fire Marshal Carey. St. Cyr.
"We get calls that people see smoke coming from their house," said St. Cyr. He adds, it's a theatrical smoke so it looks like it could be on fire.
The city plans to do similar testing in other parts of town in the coming weeks