New Jersey American Water Uses Fusible PVC® for Environmentally Sensitive Creek Crossing

The New Jersey American Water Company completed its first Fusible PVC® installation in January of 2012 when it utilized the innovative pipe system to cross Raccoon Creek in Logan Township, NJ. The potable water line, designed by Buchart-Horn, Inc. (Marlton, NJ) required a long horizontal directional drill (HDD) to cross Raccoon Creek and connect two sections of the Logan Water System. Raccoon Creek is an environmentally sensitive waterway and serves as a tributary to the Delaware River. Consequently, environmental stewardship was of the utmost importance for all project participants.

Underground Solutions, Inc. (UGSI) contracted with Carson & Roberts Site Construction and Engineering, Inc. and Pioneer Pipe Contractors Inc. to provide 1,555 LF of 16" DR 21 (200 psi) Fusible C-905® pipe and fusion services for the HDD crossing.

Carson & Roberts used a customized American Auger DD140 for the drilling operations. The Carson & Roberts drill crew completed two reaming passes of 16" and 24" before using a customized 20" ball head to swab the bore hole. Swabbing is a best practice used by directional drillers to clean and prepare the bore hole prior to pulling back the carrier pipe. Pull-back of the Fusible C-905® pipe took just under 6 hours. Due to a limited amount of space available for layout of the pipe, the installation required two intermediate fusions during the pull-back. Intermediate fusions during pull-back add an additional degree of difficulty to drilling operations requiring proper planning and technical review.

Bob Carson of Carson & Roberts commented, "Underground Solutions' engineering approach to pipeline installation significantly differentiates the company and the Fusible PVC® product from its competition. On difficult projects like Raccoon Creek, we value the technical and field support provided by Underground Solutions."

The Hydrostatic Design Basis (4,000 psi) of Fusible PVC® and standard AWWA C905 dimensions allowed for the same 16" nominal pipe size to be installed for the HDD as was installed on the open-cut portion of the Raccoon Creek project. Alternatively, a larger 20" HDPE pipe would have been required to match the internal diameter (ID) of the 16" CL 54 ductile iron (DI) pipe utilized on the open-cut sections. The smaller outside diameter (OD) of the Fusible PVC® generated significant overall project savings because of the reduction in material weight, fewer reaming passes required for proper drilling, and ability to use standard DI fittings for reconnecting back to the 16" DI pipe.

Pipeline Details and Project Summary
Owner: New Jersey American Water Company
Location: Logan Township, New Jersey
Engineer Buchart-Horn, Inc.
General Contractor: Pioneer Pipe Contractors Inc.
HDD Contractor: Carson & Roberts Site Construction
Pipe: 16" DR 21 Fusible C-905®
Installation: Horizontal Directional Drill
UGSI Contact: Matt Boeh (412) 418-3201 mboeh@undergroundsolutions.com

Pipe in position for fusion


Constrained fusion layout area


Pipe strung out in three sections


Intermediate fusion during pull-back


Pipe entering the HDD bore hole


Pipe emerges from bore hole after 6 hours