2,000+ Tons On Its Way Out

Hard at Work in Daytona Beach


USST disposing of nearly 150 tons of sand and grit from Bethune Point WRF.

USST disposing of nearly 150 tons of sand and grit from Bethune Point WRF.

That’s the weight of nearly 1,000 Ford F-150s!

USST is working hard to restore the capacity of the City of Daytona’s Bethune Point 13 MGD water reclamation facility.  Over 2,000 tons of material – primarily sand and grit – are estimated to be removed from the facility upon completion of this project.  After being offline for approximately two years, this facility is progressing towards being fully operational once we complete our work.

Sand and grit aren’t the only materials USST can remove from a facility.  We also have the ability to remove rags, vegetation and more from pipes, ditches and tanks.  Here in Daytona, our dependable crew removed vegetation up to eight-foot tall before working to restore the capacity of three large aeration ditches and one large aeration tank.

No job is too large for USST.  If you have questions about our capabilities or equipment, reach out to us at 844-765-7866 or email info@ussubmergent.com.  We love a challenge!

Storm Season Is In Full Swing – Are You Prepared?

The Impact of Hurricane Floods on Wastewater Treatment Plants

With two heavy-hitting hurricanes recently battering both Texas and Florida, wastewater treatment plants across the country can learn from what’s happening in these areas to prepare for the potential impact of flooding, storm surges, and other extreme weather on their own systems.


Florida Army National Guard soldiers went door to door in Jacksonville, Florida performing search and rescue missions on September 11, 2017 after Hurricane Irma.

In addition to causing billions of dollars of damage from wind and rain, storm surges and flooding from hurricanes Harvey and Irma have wreaked havoc in cities and wastewater treatment plants along the coastlines.  In Palm Beach, Florida, crews were out maintaining and repairing lift stations before, during and after the storm in an effort to keep the town up and running.1  In St. Petersburg and Orlando, Florida, 50o,000 gallons of untreated water flowed into streets and homes after Hurricane Irma.2  Pipelines in Florida are typically designed to handle twice the amount of water they are constructed for, but no system can handle the amounts of rain or storm surges from these types of weather events.

Meanwhile in Texas, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 40 out of 1,219 wastewater treatment plants in the Houston area are out of service due to Hurricane Harvey as of Monday, September 11.  Contaminated flood waters in streets and homes continue to impact the area with high levels of E. Coli and other bacteria and toxins, creating unsafe environments and health risks as residents return to their homes.3

Flooding in Houston, August 31, 2017.

Flooding in Houston, August 31, 2017.

Wastewater treatment plants must be able to operate under any circumstance, so what can you do when storms are headed to your city?  Fortunately, both the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have published flood and storm preparation guides that may help assess your cities current and future situation.

An Emergency Response Plan is the first step in preparing for a major weather event, as well as understanding potential threats and identifying vulnerable areas within the facility.  The EPA’s Flood Resilience Guide is a great resource for preparing wastewater treatment plants for rising waters and takes you through a set of exercises to thoroughly evaluate your facility in order to put a plan in place.  The Storm Preparation Guide provided by the FDEP is a great document to help understand the threat of storms and other extreme weather events and includes a handy checklist on planning, communications, training, staff coordination, staging and more.

Imminent weather can be daunting, but having a solid plan in place and knowing your facility has the pieces in place to handle such a situation can offer peace of mind and keep your city up and running during an emergency situation.

Image 1: National Guard searching flooded waters in Florida, courtesy of U.S. National Guard
Image 2: Flooding in Houston, August 31, 2017, courtesy of U.S. Army
1 http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/local/hurricane-irma-employees-work-tirelessly-maintain-lift-stations/YqihQLLdaVy6dkGfcBpKAK/
2 https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-09-13/cities-swimming-in-raw-sewage-as-hurricanes-overwhelm-systems
3 https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/11/health/houston-flood-contamination.html?smid=tw-share

Debris Removed, Diffusers Unharmed

Plant capacity restored while in
full operation

USST restores the capacity of wet infrastructure safely and efficiently to provide a solution for managers responsible for the maintenance of critical wet infrastructure who are facing safety, compliance, and operational challenges.


The City of Jasper’s wastewater treatment plant was experiencing increased energy costs due to reduced capacity and treatment efficiency from accumulated sand and grit in their infrastructure.

USST restored the capacity of the City of Jaspers 1.2 MGD wastewater treatment plant by safely removing 44 tons of sand and grit from nine of their structures.

Thanks to our GritGone ProcessSM for debris removal, their facility was cleaned while it remained in full operation and the material was paint filter dry upon onsite disposal.


During the debris removal process, our dependable crew worked carefully to avoid damaging any of the facility’s diffusers.

Jasper Public Works Director, Harry Davis, was very pleased and said “the work was done in a very professional manner.”

Please reach out with any questions you may have about our technology or process, or to request a free quote. We’re happy to help!

Call 844-765-7866
Email info@ussubmergent.com

Utility Maintenance: How Debris Gets Into a Facility

Ever wonder how debris gets into your facility?

The United States has between 700,000 and 800,000 miles of underground pipe that ranges from six inches to 240 inches in diameter. This aging infrastructure allows for debris to move through a waste collection system due to cracks and joints in the pipe.

Debris can be naturally occurring or litter. Natural occurring debris includes sand and grit; litter includes fats, oils and greases. Litter debris has been discarded into the wastewater by users of the system —commercial or residential.

Utility Maintenance How debris gets into a facilityDebris accumulates in structures throughout wastewater collection and treatment systems such as pipes, manholes, lift stations, wet wells, grit chambers, aeration basins, tanks, digesters and other requisite structures.

Sand and grit travel through the wastewater collection and treatment systems, ultimately ending up at the wastewater treatment plant. The material increases with aging infrastructure and can be exasperated by significant rainfall.

The accumulation of sand and grit in the aeration basin decreases capacity. This means the amount of oxygen is reduced and there is an increased use of energy and labor.

Utility Maintenance Matters

Debris issues are usually negotiated around until the adverse effects become critical. The longer the debris remains in the structure, the more challenging removal can be.

The overall risks to be considered include catastrophic, equipment and regulatory risks.

What Debris Does to Your Facility

The Problem With Debris

Debris gets into your facility through joints, seams, gaps and cracks that happen as the infrastructure (such as gravity systems and pipes) ages and shifts over time.

Let’s focus on the problematic effects debris can have on your infrastructure.

It can:

• Wreak havoc on the treatment process.
• Increase costs and reduce overall efficiencies throughout the system.
• Cause abnormal wear and tear on system components, including pumps and other mechanical components.

What Debris Does to Your Facility

Generally speaking, debris can greatly impact efficiencies of mechanical and biological systems.

Mechanically speaking, it can affect operational aspects of the collection and treatment system, including full or partial plugging of outlets and pump suctions.

When accumulated sand and grit cover air bubble diffusers on the bottom of aeration basins, the consequence is a harsh increase in energy required to deliver the air to the wastewater for aeration. This increases energy costs.

The longer debris remains in the structure, the more challenging it can be. Luckily, USST has the equipment and experience to resolve accumulated debris issues in wet infrastructure.

USST: Safer, Quicker, Cheaper, Stronger

USST is removing sand and grit from a wastewater treatment plant in Orlando, FL.

USST is removing sand and grit from a wastewater treatment plant in Orlando, FL.


USST: Safer, Quicker, Cheaper, Stronger

This week, U.S. Submergent Technologies is performing sand and grit removal from a wastewater treatment plant in Orlando, FL, which requires confined space entry.

The USST crew is removing material from two clarifiers at the plant. Both are 120 feet in diameter and 16 feet deep. Approximately 120 tons of sand and grit has been removed from Clarifier 1.

“We performed a confined space entry, which includes constant air quality monitoring,” said Paul Del Favero. “Fall protection is being used as well while on the catwalk inside the tank.”

The crew began work on Clarifier 2 this week, running the Model 949 and Model 934 simultaneously during the project.

“We have been using our proprietary equipment for the cleaning of this tank,” Del Favero said. “It’s been a real team effort.

USST expects to complete the cleaning of clarifier 2 this week.

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream

USST crew members Aaron Hood, Matt Hughes and Paul Del Favero take an ice cream break

USST crew members Aaron Hood, Matt Hughes and Paul Del Favero take an ice cream break

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream

It seems our three musketeers — Aaron Hood, Matt Hughes and Paul Del Favero — have a sweet tooth for double scoop waffle cones and ice cream sandwiches. (And we don’t blame them. In fact, they’re making us hungry!)

At U.S. Submergent Technologies, we’re proud to call this trio part of our USST crew and to know that even when they are off the job site and taking a break, they are still practicing safety by wearing their seat belts. Way to go guys!


IN THE USST LIMELIGHT: Randy Cordrey, U. S. Submergent Technologies

Say hello to Randy Cordrey, our business development manager. Our team had the pleasure of meeting Randy at the 2016 Florida Water Resources Conference. We liked him so much we asked him to join our sales team. Read on to find out what makes Randy tick.

In the USST Limelight Randy Cordrey U.S. Submergent Technologies

Randy Cordrey, US Submergent Technologies

Hometown: Washington DC

Family: My wife, Lucy, and my daughter, Jennifer.

Pets: A husky named Sierra.

Hobbies: Golf, basketball and outdoor sports.

Role model: Tiger Woods.

First job: Newspaper route at age 14.

Lesson from mom that I still live by: My mother always said to be nice to people.

Proudest accomplishment: When I was 11 years old, I pitched a perfect game — it felt awesome.

Favorite movie: Field of Dreams.

No. 1 place I’d like to visit: My wife tells me “You have to go to Paris.” It’s on my bucket list to take her.

The only person I’d want to be stranded with on a deserted island: My wife.

If someone handed me $1 million: I’d invest.

If I were a superhero, my special power would be: Professional golfer.

My motivation to work safe: My motivation is to see my family every night.

What I like best about USST: The people.

My best friend would describe me as: Hardworking, dedicated, integrity.

Song title that describes my life: “September” by Earth, Wind & Fire

One word that describes my dancing ability: Smooth.

U.S. Submergent Technologies Redefines Wastewater System Maintenance

U.S. Submergent Technologies Redefines Wastewater System Maintenance



U.S. Submergent Technologies Redefines Wastewater System Maintenance

Orlando, FL, Feb 21, 2017 —U.S. Submergent Technologies (USST) is officially the new name of the wastewater system maintenance innovator previously known as Polston Applied Technologies. The name change comes as part of an ongoing initiative by U.S. Submergent Technologies to redefine how the capacity of wet infrastructure is restored and to communicate better the company’s unique capability to provide waste removal from wet infrastructure (tanks and large-diameter pipes) without the need for bypass pumping. USST has successfully brought its disruptive technology to the wastewater collection and treatment industry.

The category of Submergent Cleaning is defined as the ability to remove sand, grit and residuals from wet environments, primarily tanks and pipes. U.S. Submergent Technologies stands as the only company offering this highly-effective technology for waste removal from wet infrastructure.

Company Founder and CEO Denver Stutler said, “At U.S. Submergent Technologies, we are dedicated to making a positive and meaningful difference, creating an awareness of what you don’t see and restoring the capacity of wet infrastructure safely and efficiently.”

Denver Stutler, an engineer and former principal at Camp Dresser and McKee, Inc., international environmental engineering firm, served as the Chief of Staff (2003 – 2005) to Governor Jeb Bush, and was appointed and confirmed by the Florida Senate as Secretary (2005 – 2007) of the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). Building on Stutler’s public and private sector expertise, U.S. Submergent Technologies has utilized its GritGone ProcessSM (formerly the Polston Process) to clean wastewater collection and treatment structures once clogged with sand, restoring their capacity. The proprietary capacity restoration services of U.S. Submergent Technologies help utilities extend the life of existing infrastructure, thereby saving utilities time and money.

The GritGone ProcessSM uses the exclusive Combination³® technology equipment of USST to produce successful results other technologies cannot match. The U.S. Submergent Technology Combination³® trucks function as a complete standalone cleaning system for large-diameter pipes, tanks and other hard-to-clean environments. Because the GritGone ProcessSM can take place in surcharged (wet) conditions, facilities remain in service during cleaning.

Although the company has changed its name, U.S. Submergent Technologies will continue to employ the same exceptional team and innovative processes that have enabled it to provide outstanding service to its clients. All company phone numbers remain the same, email addresses will reach corresponding staff members and the previous web address is seamlessly redirecting website users to www.ussubmergent.com.



Dane Platko



Safety Spotlight: Confined Spaces

Confined spaces can be deadly.

Each year, a number of people are killed or seriously injured in confined spaces. This happens in a wide range of industries and includes those working in confined spaces, and those who try to rescue them.

Our hearts go out to the three workers who died last weekend while working in a confined space in Key Largo, and volunteer firefighter, Leonardo Felipe Moreno, who is in critical condition after attempting to rescue one of the workers. 

A confined space can be any enclosed area where there is risk of death or serious injury from hazardous substances or dangerous conditions.

OSHA uses the term “permit-required confined space” to describe a confined space with one or more of the following characteristics:

  • contains or has the potential to contain a hazardous atmosphere
  • has walls that converge inward or floors that slope downward and taper into a smaller area that could trap or asphyxiate an entrant
  • contains other recognized safety or health hazards, such as unguarded machinery, exposed live wires or heat stress

Dangers of confined spaces can include:

  • lack of oxygen
  • poisonous gases, fumes or vapors
  • liquids, solids or gases that can suddenly fill the space or release gases into it
  • fires and explosions from flammable vapors and excess oxygen
  • dust present in high concentrations
  • hot conditions leading to a dangerous increase in body temperature

Follow these rules to ensure your safety and the safety of others!

  1. Monitor the atmosphere
  2. Eliminate or control hazards
  3. Ventilate the space
  4. Use proper PPE
  5. Isolate the space
  6. Know the attendant’s role
  7. Be prepared for rescues with external equipment and a rescue crew
  8. Use good lighting and have backup lighting on-hand
  9. Plan for emergencies
  10. Keep communication constant