City water crews installed water valves Tuesday on Highland Street, using a recently purchased machine that allows the city to install valves without shutting down large blocks of water services in the city.


City water crews installed water valves Tuesday on Highland Street, using a recently purchased machine that allows the city to install valves without shutting down large blocks of water services in the city.

Workers started the first valve installation around 7 a.m. at the 1200 block of East Highland and finished the second valve installation in the 800 block of East Highland around 2 p.m., Deputy Utility Director Randy Brock said.

The gate valves are installed with an Insta-Valve machine that allows crews to isolate the installation of valves without shutting down waterlines to broad residential or business areas in Shawnee.

“It will shorten the amount of people included in a shut-off if we have a main break. This way we may just shut off one block,” Brock said.
City workers have been using the machine for some time, but recently went before the Shawnee City Commission to purchase the valves. City workers then received training on the machine on Feb. 14 and have been using it as often as possible.

“We have ordered enough valves to keep us busy for a while and that’s one thing we wanted to do was keep going,” Brock said. “This is going to be a work in progress probably for sometime.”

This way city workers can keep learning and perfect the use of the machine to more efficiently install valves and repair water lines, he said.
The city now has a valve crew that goes out and tests water valves to ensure that they are secure and functioning properly and repair the ones that do not work as well as they should.

The valves that the city is installing are gate valves that shut the water off to allow city workers to get in and fix a broken line, Brock said.