INLET CLAMP AND SCREEN
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention 5 The present invention relates generally to the field of
municipal sewer inlets, and more particularly, is directed to an inlet clamp and screen to protect the curb entrance opening to a municipal storm sewer.
2. Discussion of the Prior Art 10 It is the usual practice in and about the majority of
built-up urban areas to provide an underground stormwater drainage system to carry rain water run-off to suitable point of discharge, such as a natural river or stream. The underground systems must be provided 15 with a plurality of judiciously placed inlets which are positioned at ground level to permit the storm water run-off to enter the sewer. The underground stormwater drainage systems usually are fabricated of steel, concrete or other material pipes or they can comprise 20 streams or underground drainage ditches, or perhaps combinations of the two. In those localities where paved streets, curbs and sidewalks are in place, it is the usual practice to position the sewer inlets directly in the sidewalk through the curb to thereby provide easy 25 entrance for stormwater as it falls upon the streets and other paved areas. Most often, the municipal sewer inlets which are positioned in the curbs comprise a contiguous opening in the sidewalk and curb and a cast iron cover which horizontally overfits and protects the 30 opening in the sidewalk. The curbs usually are completely unprotected and simply present an opening in the curb construction to receive therein the stormwater run-off from the street. Suitable pipes, culverts, branch connectors, manholes and the like of known construe- 35 tion have been employed in well known manner to convey the stormwater from the inlet to the underground drainage system. Usually, when the inlet is positioned directly in the street, a suitable heavy cast iron grate is employed in planar alignment with the paved 40 street area to offer a degree of protection to passersby and to vehicles by providing sufficient obstruction at the inlet to prevent damage or injury which could be caused by inadvertent entrance into the inlet opening construction. However, so far as is known to the appli- 45 cant, no comparable protection has been designed for curb type sewer inlet openings and the need remains to provide a sturdy, easily installed screen or grate which can be positioned over a curb type sewer inlet to prevent the entrance into the sewer of unwanted foreign 50 objects.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates generally to the field of storm sewer inlets, and more particularly, is directed to 55 an easily installed protecting screen and clamp for use with both new and existing inlet constructions.
The inlet clamp and screen of the present invention comprises one or more generally F-shaped clamps which are suitable for easy, field attachment to the usual 60 cast iron sewer inlet cover. Each clamp may be fabricated of steel or cast iron to an F-shaped configuration in known manner and comprises generally an upper horizontal leg, a lower horizontal leg which is spaced from the upper leg by a vertical distance that is greater 65 than the thickness of the cast iron sewer inlet cover and a vertical support leg which is affixed either to the lower horizontal leg or to both the upper horizontal leg
and the lower horizontal leg. Preferably, the support leg extends in length a distance at least equal to the height of the sewer inlet cover above the street surface to thereby extend completely from the cover to the surface of the street for support purposes.
The lower horizontal clamp leg is provided with one or more spaced, threaded openings within which are threadedly mounted conventional thumb bolts which are oriented with their heads facing downwardly. By turning the thumb bolts within the threaded openings in the lower horizontal leg to bear against the under surface of the inlet cover, the clamp may be easily and sturdily affixed to the sewer inlet cover without requiring any special tools or any particular skill.
The vertical support leg of each clam preferably is recessed from the forward terminus of the lower leg and is provided with one or more openings therethrough of size sufficient to receive therein a threaded bolt. A sewer inlet protecting a screen extends substantially over the entire height and width of the opening of the sewer inlet within the recess defined by the vertical support leg and can be secured in place by utilizing suitable bolts, nuts and washers to affix the screen to the clamp or clamps at the respective vertical support legs thereof. In a preferred embodiment, the vertical support leg may terminate downwardly in a pointed end whereby the end of a leg can be embedded into the street construction to provide an extremely sturdy, easily constructed and essentially permanent reinforcing installation. In addition to preventing leaves, paper and other debris from entering the sewer inlet, the screen serves an important safety function by preventing the entrance of balls , toys, etc., an occurrence which might cause a child to attempt to enter the sewer inlet to retrieve the lost object.
It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a novel inlet clamp and screen of the type set forth.
It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved inlet clamp and screen which includes one or more generally F-shaped clamps of design and dimensions to easily affix to an existing cast iron sewer inlet cover and to provide a vertical support leg surface for affixing a vertically oriented screen thereto to cover the sewer inlet opening.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a novel inlet clamp and screen for securing to a horizontal sewer inlet cover which comprises generally an F-shaped clamp, the clamp having an upper horizontal leg which upwardly covers a portion of the top of the inlet cover and a lower horizontal leg which partially covers a portion of the lower surface of the sewer inlet cover, a vertical support leg joining the upper and lower legs, the support leg extending vertically over the portion of the sewer inlet opening, a protective screen to cover at least a major portion of the sewer inlet opening, means to secure the clamp to the sewer inlet cover and means to secure the protective screen to the clamp vertical support leg.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a novel inlet clamp and screen wherein an easily installed clamp is affixed to an existing cast iron sewer inlet cover in a manner to provide a vertical support over a portion of the sewer inlet opening, a screen overfitting the sewer inlet opening forwardly of the clamp, means to easily and securely affix the clamp to the sewer inlet cover and means to easily and securely affix