For many years, semi drivers have faced issues with the low underpass on East Tiffin Street. Most semis will not clear the top of the structure and will either get stuck or have to turn around, a process that usually involves police and traffic control.

Willard City Manager Bryson Hamons told members of city council signs have been installed on US 224 and Ohio 103 warning of the 13’2” clearance for the underpass. GPS does not make the distinction for the lower height.

“We hope these signs help prevent further accidents and backups from semis and other vehicles,” Hamons pointed out, “when they unknowingly travel this route.”

Hamons said the US 224 main cleaning that was scheduled for June has been delayed. The company that is doing the work is coming to Willard from New Jersey. Two members of that crew have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

“Preparations are bing made for his event as the wastewater treatment department has prepared a plan,” Hamons noted, “to divert the flow coming from the Keefer Street combine sewer to the lagoon for an eight-hour period. The material from the cleaning will sit in the lagoon for pretreatment which will act as a buffer prior to treatment at the plant.

“They felt that was a little safer to do because there could be some minerals or other harmful metals in the water.”

Hamons said the city will let residents know there might be an odor during the cleaning.

Several weeks ago, there was a water leak at Keefer and Spring streets, according to Hamons.

“The leak was patched,” he pointed out. “However since then, we have decided to extend the Keefer Street resurfacing from Washington Street to the underpass to replace the entire waterline under this intersection.

“This line is extremely old,” he added. “We would hate for another section of the lien to break after putting new pavement over the top. This will be done in-house by our street department.”

On June 16, service technicians and a software programmer from the Gorman Rupp pump company were in Willard to reprogram the current Programmable Logic Controller that operates the 224-pump station.

“The problem was originally thought to be a bad program card that was obsolete,” Hamons explained. “We were pleasantly surprised to find out the programmer reprogrammed the PLC with our existing card. Everything works as it should for now.

“While everything worked out for us this time, we were reminded that the PLC and several components are obsolete,” he pointed out. “Due to the age of these components, a complete PLC upgrade, including controls, was recommended which we will look into getting into future capital.”

 Hamons said Columbia Gas does not thing they will finish their project in the city until at least Aug. 1.

“That’s what they are shooting for,” he explained. At the time, they had 90% of the mains done. I think it’s closer to 100%. Their cameras have found many potential issues in our sewer lines that have allowed us to do preventive medicine. They said they had 100 of 222 services done.”

Hamons said the city expects to hear from the Ohio Department of Aviation Department of Transportation on the airport grant proposal some time in July. There were 40 airports that submitted proposals for t0 projects which totaled $45 million of work.

“This grant is highly competitive,” He pointed out. “There is only $6.5 million available.”

The second ultrasonic algae control unit has been repaired and placed in the reservoir. Hamons said the city has seen a substantial improvement in preventing algae growth since the units were installed in 2019.

The city will be receiving a $3,000 grant from the Huron County Mental Health and Addiction Services board to help with the DARE program. Hamons said the money can be used for supplies and equipment for the program.

Recently 31 city employees completed a refresher course for CPR provided by Willard Fire & Rescue. Hamons said employees also learned how to use and Automated External Defibrillator.

“Hopefully, we will never need to use this training,” he noted. “It is reassuring to know that we have been properly trained in case of an incident.”

 Council members accepted a $10,051.40 donation from the Willard Moose Lodge #2153.

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