By: Donna Fuqua, Charles County Public Information Office

Charles County Government has hired Flow Assessment Services, LLC to perform a study of the county’s sewer system, starting on Monday, Sept.30.

The purpose of the study is to locate stormwater sources that might be connected to the sanitary sewer system. Connections such as catch basins, roof drains, area drains, broken sewer pipes, and open pipe joints will be located through a method called smoke testing.

The testing is performed on sewer manholes that are typically located in the streets or near your residence. Non-toxic and non-staining white smoke is inserted into the sanitary sewer system by means of a smoke generating device.

During the test, it is normal to observe smoke emitting from the manhole covers on the street, vent pipes located on the homes, and local business establishments. In the unlikely event that smoke enters your building, please do not become alarmed.

Homes and businesses will receive fliers when testing will be performed within 24 to 72 hours. Heavy rain or weekends could possibly shift the testing beyond the 72-hour time frame. It is not necessary for you to be home while the testing is being performed.

The goal of this program is to reduce sewer maintenance costs and minimize flooding. This study will conclude after all sewer systems in the Indian Head Manor and Piney Branch area have been tested. 

To learn more about this study, visit

For additional questions or concerns, call the Department of Public Works at 301-609-7400. 

Citizens with special needs may contact the Maryland Relay Service at 711, or Relay Service TDD: 800-735-225

David M. Higgins II, Publisher/Editor

David M. Higgins was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southern Maryland. He has had a passion for journalism since high school. After spending many years in the Hospitality Industry he began working in...