Solving Oil Water Separator Problems

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Justice Institute Of British Columbia
Maple Ridge Fire and Safety Training Centre
Intermediate Treatment of Oily Wastewater from Fire Fighter Training Exercises

Harlan G. Kelly, P.Eng., Vice President, Technology, Dayton & Knight Ltd., North Vancouver, B.C.

Blake Smith, Facilities Manager, J.I.B.C., Maple Ridge, B.C.

Kirby Mohr, P.E.,
Mohr Separations Research. Inc.
Lewisville, TX

Presented at
BC Water and Wastewater Association Meeting,
Penticton, BC 2007


The Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC) operates a Fire and Safety Training Centre located in Maple Ridge, British Columbia.  The training centre utilizes two water treatment systems designated as “Class A” and “Class B”.  The “Class A” system treats wastewater generated from training exercises involving wood burning fires and appears to be performing adequately.  The “Class B” system treats wastewater associated with training exercises involving fuel related fires.  Waste streams in the Class B system typically include the carryover of AFFF (aqueous film-forming foams), Purple K Dry Chemical Powder, Soot, and Aviation Grade Fire Training Fuel.  Wastewater from both systems is reclaimed and reused in training exercises.

The JIBC has now completed the intermediate upgrade of the Class B wastewater treatment system.  The objectives of the upgrade were to improve the quality of the reclaimed water and eliminate any potential health concerns associated with exposure of the students and staff during its use in training exercises.

Dayton & Knight Ltd. was retained by the J.I.B.C. to study options for improving the treatment of the oily wastewater including bench scale testing and provide design of new facilities.  The completed design included the enlargement of existing influent tanks to increase hydraulic retention time, installation of a coalescing plate pack oily water separator provided by Mohr Separations Research, Inc. to improve separation of hydrocarbons, addition of a ferric chloride flocculation system, and retrofitting of settling tanks with baffles for improved floc settling.

Supporting works include a 14,000 L vertical storage tank complete with a floating suction to provide enhanced separation of the reclaimed hydrocarbons and a waste solids storage tank.

The presentation will provide a review of the program objectives, discuss the approaches used in the selection of treatment solutions, and provide a general overview of the current project status and future additions.  Site and equipment drawings and photo images will be used as a reference for the discussion.