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Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Pp. 153-158 in On-Site Wastewater Treatment, Proc. Ninth Natl. Symp. on Individual and Small Community Sewage Systems (11-14 March 2001, Fort Worth, Texas, USA), ed. K. Mancl., St. Joseph, Mich. ASAE  701P0009.(doi:10.13031/2013.6024)
Authors:   R. L. Goff, M. A. Gross, J.T. Paul, E. M. Rutledge

Wet soil conditions often lead to hydraulic failure of onsite soil based wastewater renovation systems. The purpose of this study was to determine if a shallow seasonal water table could be lowered enough using drains, to prevent hydraulic overload and allow for proper septic tank effluent renovation. A low-pressure distribution system with drains between each septic tank effluent renovation trench was installed in a soil with a very shallow perched seasonal water table. Monitoring wells were installed inside and outside the perimeter of the drain to measure depth to free water. Free water was measured at depths as shallow as 5 cm from the surface outside the perimeter of the drain during the wet season, while it was encountered only once in the wells inside the perimeter of the drain during the wet season. Samples taken from the drain discharge had fecal coliform counts ranging from 2 to 2000 colony forming units (CFU) / 100 ml. Results show that the drains sufficiently lowered the water table; however, a separation of 91 centimeters between the septic renovation trench and drain trench did not provide proper renovation of septic tank effluent.

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