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Join IAMU for Utility Workers Appreciation Night at the I-Cubs' Game!

Posted By Josh Trout, Tuesday, July 3, 2018

The Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities would like to invite you to the Utility Workers Appreciate Night at Principal Park on Saturday, Aug. 4. Join fellow municipal utility workers from across the state for a fun-filled night taking in an Iowa Cubs baseball game. Tickets are $7 each with no limit on the number of tickets you may purchase. You may purchase tickets for family and friends or forward the link below to them so that they can purchase their own tickets. We look forward to seeing you at the ballpark!

Click below for a link to more information and to purchase tickets:

Tags:  Baseball  I-Cubs  Utility Workers Appreciate Night 

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Check Out the IAMU Benefit Program

Posted By IAMU, Friday, June 29, 2018

The Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities (IAMU) has always been about supporting and strengthening Iowa’s municipal utilities. That mission includes helping IAMU members provide employees with access to the benefits that they need and deserve at affordable prices for both the employees and the member utilities or municipalities.

There is no shortage of benefit brokers out there that would welcome the opportunity to work with utilities and municipalities. Trying to determine which benefit professional is the best to meet your needs can be daunting. That’s why IAMU has done that work for you. IAMU endorses Mark J. Becker & Associates. IAMU trusts that Mark and his team can provide our members with comprehensive, flexible and affordable coverage with expert consultation and exceptional service.

As you consider future benefits for your organization’s employees, please take a look at what Mark J. Becker & Associates can do for you through its IAMU Benefit Program.

Tags:  Benefits  Mark J. Becker 

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Call for Presentations: Annual Water and Wastewater Operator's Training Workshop

Posted By IAMU, Friday, June 29, 2018

IAMU will hold its 24th Annual Water and Wastewater Operator’s Training Workshop on November 13-15, 2018. As we prepare for this yearly training that brings together municipal water and wastewater operators from around Iowa, we are asking for presentation proposals. The presentations must provide educational content and must not be sales pitches for specific products or services because members will be receiving continuing education credit for their time at the workshop.

If you are interested in presenting, download, complete, and return the Call for Presentations Form to

If you have any questions about the Call for Presentations Form or the workshop, please contact Steve Marsh at 515.289.1999 or by email at

Once completed, the Call for Presentations Form may be emailed to Steve.

Tags:  Water  Water Workshop 

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Toolbox Talk-Tick Facts

Posted By IAMU, Thursday, June 28, 2018

Ticks find their hosts by detecting animals’ breath and body odors, or by sensing body heat, moisture, and vibrations. Some species can even recognize a shadow. In addition, ticks pick a place to wait by identifying well-used paths. Then they wait for a host, resting on the tips of grasses and shrubs. Ticks can’t fly or jump, but many tick species wait in a position known as “questing.”

While questing, ticks hold onto leaves and grass by their third and fourth pair of legs. They hold the first pair of legs outstretched, waiting to climb on to the host. When a host brushes the spot where a tick is waiting, it quickly climbs aboard. Some ticks will attach quickly and others will wander, looking for places like the ear, or other areas where the skin is thinner.

Depending on the tick species and its stage of life, preparing to feed can take from 10 minutes to two hours. When the tick finds a feeding spot, it grasps the skin and cuts into the surface. The tick then inserts its feeding tube. Many species also secrete a cement-like substance that keeps them firmly attached during the meal. The feeding tube can have barbs that help keep the tick in place. Ticks also can secrete small amounts of saliva with anesthetic properties so that the animal or person can’t feel that the tick has attached itself. If the tick is in a sheltered spot, it can go unnoticed.

  • Use repellents that contain 20% to 30% DEET on exposed skin and clothing for protection that lasts up to several hours. Always follow product instructions.
  • To remove a tick, grasp it with tweezers as close to the skin as possible and pull
    straight out, as shown.
  • Bathe or shower as soon as possible after coming indoors (preferably within two
    hours) to wash off and more easily find ticks that are crawling on you.
  • Conduct a full-body tick check using a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all
    parts of your body upon return from tick-infested areas. Check for ticks under the arms, in and around the ears, inside the belly button, behind the knees, between the legs, around the waist, and especially in the hair. Ticks can ride into the home on clothing, then attach to a person later, so carefully examine clothing and gear.

If you develop a rash, body aches and pains or fever within several weeks of removing a tick, see your doctor. Be sure to tell the doctor about your recent tick bite, when the bite occurred, and where you most likely acquired the tick.

Tickborne diseases can result in mild symptoms treatable at home to severe infections requiring hospitalization. Although easily treated with antibiotics, these diseases can be difficult for physicians to diagnose. Early recognition and treatment of the infection decreases the risk of serious complications.

Tags:  Safety  Safety Services  Toolbox Talk 

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Attention Gas Members: National Transportation Safety Board Issues Safety Recommendation Report for Installation of Permalock Mechanical Tapping Tee Assemblies

Posted By IAMU, Wednesday, June 27, 2018

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is providing the following information to urge the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and Honeywell to take action on safety recommendations intended to prevent the incorrect installation of PermaLock mechanical tapping tee assemblies in gas distribution systems. These recommendations are derived from an ongoing investigation of a fatal accident involving a natural gas explosion and fire in Millersville, Pennsylvania. The NTSB is issuing two recommendations to PHMSA and two recommendations to Honeywell.

On July 2, 2017, at 12:32 p.m. eastern standard time, a natural gas explosion and fire destroyed a single-family residence at 206 Springdale Lane, in Millersville, Pennsylvania. One person died, and three people were injured. Two nearby residences were severely damaged and condemned for demolition.


UGI Utilities, Inc. (UGI) supplied natural gas to the Millersville residences through a plastic natural gas pipeline (main) and service lines, which UGI operated at a pressure of 54 pounds per square inch, gauge. The main was 2 inches in diameter and made of Aldyl polyethylene; the 0.50-inch diameter service lines were made of polyethylene. Post-accident, the main and service lines at the accident site were pressure tested, which indicated that a PermaLock mechanical tapping tee assembly was leaking gas at the connection of the tee assembly to the main in front of the destroyed residence. UGI installed the tee assembly in June 1998; it had been in service for 19 years when the accident occurred.


The NTSB examination of the PermaLock tee assembly involved in the accident has revealed that the tee assembly was incorrectly installed. Although the cutter tool pierced a hole in the main, the locking sleeve did not progress down far enough into the tower to form threads in that hole. As a result, the locking sleeve was not attached to the main. The NTSB also found that two of the four Nylon bolts on the tee assembly were fractured in a manner consistent with slow crack growth. These findings indicate the likelihood of varying tee assembly installation techniques.


On June 25, the NTSB issued the following recommendations:


To the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration:

Work with state pipeline regulators to incorporate into their inspection programs, a review to ensure that gas distribution pipeline operators are using best practices recommended by the manufacturer in their distribution integrity management programs, including using the specified tools and methods, to correctly install PermaLock mechanical tapping tee assemblies. (P-18-1)


Reference the use of external sources of information for threat identification in your frequently asked questions for preparation of distribution integrity management programs. (P-18-2)


To Honeywell:
Update your PermaLock mechanical tapping tee assembly installation instructions to specify the exact tools that should be used during installation and explain what an installer should sense while using those tools throughout the installation process. (P-18-3)

Specify in your PermaLock mechanical tapping tee assembly installation instructions a not-to-exceed torque limit for Nylon bolts and have that value checked and adjusted with a torque wrench immediately after installation. (P-18-4)

If you have any questions about the NTSB’s safety recommendations for Installation of Permalock Mechanical Tapping Tee Assemblies, contact Nick Vandegriff, IAMU Gas Services & Compliance Specialist at or by phone at 515.289.1999 (office), 641.919.8411 (cell).

Tags:  Gas  Honeywell  NTSB  PermaLock  PHMSA 

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