For several years, local Michigan municipalities were over-loaded with septage disposal issues and it was difficult for private pumpers to offload as land-application of septage became illegal. So John Campbell, founder of Big Fish Environmental and a 29 year veteran of septic tank pumping, started developing a unique and efficient septage receiving and treatment plant design.
Campbell reviewed several septage receiving units from other manufactures before choosing the Honey Monster® Septage Receiving System from JWC Environmental in Costa Mesa, CA. “The hair removal in the auger portion of the Honey Monster resulted in virtually no downstream clogging,” said Campbell. “The screening ability also made our homogenizing process more consistent per slurry load.”
Campbell provides consulting for pumpers interested in developing their own business running a receiving and treatment facility. By combining proprietary equipment as part of a treatment process, Campbell was able to develop a self-contained plant that can receive septage from the local municipality, private septage haulers, and other industrial producers. They all need to address waste processing.
In 2005, the first Big Fish Environmental facility was built in Charlevoix, Michigan. “We put our process to the test and were receiving an average of 20,000 GPD waste from private septage haulers, local produce processors and municipal waste including fats, oils and grease,” said Campbell. “We basically took and tested all the septage waste that no one else wanted to handle.”
First, septage is received from pumper trucks by the Honey Monster and then flows into a two-compartment equalization tank. As part of this process, the Honey Monster’s high removal rate of inorganic solids along with the homogenization of organics proved crucial in Big Fish meeting EPA specifications for 503 exceptional quality Class A biosolids.
The Honey Monster is an easy-to-install automated system. First, septage flows through the rock trap where heavy items fall out. Rags, plastics, debris and other solids are quickly shredded by the powerful HYDRO grinder. An auger screen removes, washes and compacts the solids, putting organics back into the waste stream, decreasing volume and reducing odor. The Auger’s tilt and swivel feature allows easy access for inspections.