The WWTF is a two-stage trickling filter plant, or a secondary treatment facility. This simple means that we treat beyond our primary stage of treatment. We utilize bio-towers, which are of the same design as conventional trickling filters except that the media in the towers is much deeper. This gives us a greater capacity for treating the waters from the residents and businesses of Winterset with a somewhat smaller footprint. Our complete layout for treatment includes: Headworks with a bar screen, grit removal and flow measurement, two primary clarifiers, two first stage bio-towers and two second stage bio-towers, two final clarifiers and flow measurement again. We also utilize two aerobic digesters to treat the solids removed in the primary clarifiers. Our job here is to remove the solids contained in the water, which is the pollution that we prevent from entering the Middle River. We are consistently able to remove 90 to 93% of the solids we receive, which is far in excess of the 85% we are required to remove by the State of Iowa.
We currently generate 180,000 to 200,000 gallons of solids, called biosolids per year, in the digestive process. This requires us to land apply those solids twice a year, under very strict guidelines for the EPA. We provide a nutrient rich material that aids in agriculture. It is high in organic material and nutrients that can help replenish the soil after crops have been harvested.
Another part of our responsibility is to take care of the collection system. This is the network of over 200,000 feet of sewer lines buried under our streets that convey the wastewater and wastes from homes and businesses to the treatment facility. Much of the water flows by gravity to the plant, but at times we need to assist in getting the water moving. To do this we have need of the aid of lift stations. We have five lift stations that help us transport the waste water to the treatment facility. there are times when solids, roots and debris can stop the flow of the water in the lines. To aid us when this happens we also have a combination flusher and vactor truck that can unplug the line and get the water flowing again. Wastewater Treatment has become an integral part of the growth in population and industry for the city. Our job is to keep the City of Winterset in a position to handle an increase in both. To do this we have a staff of three:
Superintendent Ron Jacobsen
Operators, Perry Watson and Dan Luke
Wastewater Treatment is important, not just for the City of Winterset, but also for the protection of the environment of the Middle River and beyond. In order to do this, it is also important to anticipate future needs in treatment. We are in the process of adding additional treatment capabilities to put the City in a position to meet stricter guidelines required by the Environmental Protection Administration. Treatment requirements and approaches are always evolving, and the City has taken a proactive approach to meeting those new regulations and those that may come in the future. We invite you to learn more about our role in the community. Just call 515-462-3764.