PUC this week


PUC wishes to advise the public of the following activities for the week of August 21st, 2017. This notice is organised into five sections; Electrical Line Clearing (Tree Trimming), Wooden Pole Testing and Treatment, Water Infrastructure Renewal, Water Operations Activities, and Unidirectional Flushing Program (UDF).


Each year, PUC Forestry Technicians inspect Sault Ste. Marie’s electrical distribution system. During this process, trees near power lines are trimmed or removed as needed by our line-clearing contractor Asplundh Canada to reduce the risk of contact with high voltage electrical wires. The purpose of this work is to ensure public safety while at the same time improving the reliability of our city’s electrical system by reducing the number of unplanned power interruptions. Completing this inspection and trimming program for the entire city takes approximately four years.

Street tree trimming has been deferred for the week of August 21st – August 25th. Customers are reminded that if they have a dead tree or notice one near overhead electrical lines to contact PUC Customer Care at 705-759-6522.


In an effort to ensure the overhead system remains safe and reliable, PUC has retained Pole Care International Inc. to perform a system wide test and treatment program on all of its older wooden hydro poles. As an industry best practice, the regular testing and treatment of wooden poles maximizes their useful life, as well as identifying any that might require immediate attention.

For 2017, testing will primarily occur in the east end of the city (east of Lake Street and south of Trunk Road). Customers are advised that pole testing activities will primarily be conducted on City property, but at times it may be necessary for crews to access private property (depending on pole locations). Completing this year’s testing and treatment program will take approximately five weeks.


This year’s Water Infrastructure Renewal Projects (Street Reconstruction) are underway. The PUC will be working with city staff to keep affected customers informed on the following renewal projects:

·   Franklin Street
·   Grace Street
·   John Street (City Aqueduct Project)


Operational activities for the week are:

·         Annual Hydrant Testing
o   The testing of the city’s 2,500 fire hydrants is currently underway. This work is necessary to ensure all hydrants are functioning properly. Testing will occur across the city throughout the summer. There will be no hydrant testing on weekends and holidays.

·         Elgin Street/Grace Street – Street Reconstruction
o   In conjunction with the ongoing the street reconstruction project, the decommissioning of the existing watermain on Grace Street is underway. During this process, PUC will oversee the decommissioning and removal of this old watermain.

·         Simpson Street – New Water Service
o   A developer is installing a new commercial water service on Simpson Street. During this process, PUC will oversee the testing and commissioning of this new service.

·        City Storm Sewer Project – Pim Street to Gladstone Avenue
o   In connection with the City’s storm sewer project, PUC will oversee the temporary removal of a watermain to allow for the installation of a new storm sewer system.

·        John Street Reconstruction
o   Commissioning of the new watermain is underway.

There is a chance customers in the area impacted by operational activities may experience a change in water quality. This is because anytime there is a significant shift in the rate or direction of flow of water in the distribution system, sediment in the watermains can be disturbed and carried along with the water. Customers are asked to contact PUC Customer Care should they experience discoloured water or any unusual change in water quality.


PUC water customers are advised that the Unidirectional Flushing (UDF) Program for 2017 is underway in the east end of the city. Customers are encouraged to visit the PUC website at www.ssmpuc.com for regular updates and to see a map(s) of the flushing area. The UDF Program is performed to remove sediment from within the city’s watermains and is a recognised industry best practice for improving water quality.

·         UDF flushing for August 21st – August 25th will continue in two areas, the first will be generally bounded by, Pine Street to Churchill Boulevard and Creery Avenue to Shore Drive. The second area will be generally bounded by, Black Road to South Market Street and McNabb Street to Trunk Road .

The PUC would like to remind all customers that work scheduled for next week is tentative and subject to change due to weather or resource constraints.