Written By: Service Authority
The Service Authority routinely maintains water and sewer easements near or on your parcel using Service Authority employees or Service Authority contractor. The easement clearing will start on Monday, January 9, 2023, and will be completed on or before Thursday, January 26, 2023. Service Authority employees will be clearing the easements of trees and shrubs to ensure that Service Authority vehicles and equipment can access the water or sewer easements in the event of an emergency or to perform preventative maintenance.
During the easement clearing process, you may see our crews in the woods and/or hear our equipment (chainsaws, tractors, brush mowers, etc.). It is expected that our employees will be working in each easement for approximately two days before moving onto the next easement.
Please see the attached Frequently Asked Questions list for more information. If you have additional questions, please call the Service Authority at 703-335-7950. We will be happy to answer any question you may have regarding our easement clearing activities.
Your Service Authority representative for this work is:
Scott Sexton, Collection and Distribution Team Leader
Office Ph. # 703 335-8900
Work Cell # 703 269-8721
WATER & SEWER EASEMENT MAINTENANCE PROCEDURES
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: What is a sewer and water easement?
A: A sewer and water easement is a strip of land in which a sewer and/or water line has been constructed. The Service Authority does not actually own this land, but the easement gives the Service Authority the right to use and maintain the land for the sewer and water line.
Q: How Does the Service Authority acquire the easement?
A: The Service Authority acquires most easements when neighborhoods are constructed, and earlier in some cases. Once granted, the easement remains in effect when the property changes hands from one owner to the next.
Q: How do I know there is a sewer and/or water easement on my land?
A: The easement should be noted in the survey plat of your property and on the deed.
Q: Why is the Service Authority doing this project?
A: The Service Authority needs to provide and maintain access to our existing easements.
Q: What happens if the work is not done?
A: If there is a sewage overflow or a water main break, we will not be able to access the problem area without cutting our way in. This could prevent the Service Authority from reaching the overflow or water main break for an extended period. Also, without easement clearing, trees and their roots will grow around and under manholes and sewer and water lines. Should the trees fall, significant damage to the manholes and/or the sewer and water lines can occur, including sewage overflow or water main breaks.
Q: What is the Service Authority going to do along or near my property?
A: It depends on the condition of the easement. If there is only grass and weeds, no work will be done. If there are vines, briars, and trees, the entire easement will be cleared. In some cases, clearing the easement will necessitate the removal of large trees. Brush, bines, small trees, and limbs will be mulched and left on the easement. Larger trees will be cut up and stacked to the side of the easement.
Q: How long will the work last?
A: Individual property owners should be affected for only a few days.
Q: How often will this easement need to be cleared?
A: Once we clear the easement, we plan to mow along the easement periodically (every 2 to 3 years) to keep the vegetation under control.
Q: If an easement is on my property and has to be cleared, will I be charged for the work?
A: No. The Service Authority will bear all of the project costs.
Q: What effect will this have on my property?
A: Work crews will have to clear the easement on your property. They will access the easement by traveling from public roads along the easement.
Q: Is it necessary to clear the entire width of the easement?
A: Yes, it is necessary to clear the entire width of the easement. Experience has shown if we do not clear the entire width of the easement, particularly around manholes, we are unable to get our equipment in to perform routine maintenance on the system or respond to emergencies.