Un-bead-able

Mardi Gras utility cleanup yields 93,000 lbs. of trademark attire

When it comes to celebrations, New Orleans bears the standard by which all else is measured.

This was evidenced by the completed cleanup of the city’s catch basins—boxes with grates that facilitate water drainage—which yielded about 7.2 million pounds of debris, including 93,000 pounds of Mardi Gras beads.

The cleanup project, completed in early January, was a four-month undertaking made difficult by the severe 2017 hurricane season. New Orleans Public Works was responsible for the project.

Catch basins are boxes available in various sizes and materials that are placed in the ground near areas of standing water to help facilitate proper water drainage and avoid property damage. The top of the box features a grate through which excess water and solids drain into the underground box. The solid particles then settle at the bottom of the box while the water collects until it reaches the outlet trap, according to Mr. Rooter’s Plumbing. The outlet trap is connected to an underground piping system that leads the water to a local sewage plant or stream. Once the solids accumulate and account for one-third of the basin’s contents, you must remove the top grate and clean out the catch basin so it can continue to function properly.

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