Open-sided buildings increase safety at municipal sand and salt storage facilities
The proper storage, loading and unloading of salt and sand is extremely important for municipalities. Improper storage and handling can lead to environmental pollution, wasted resources and worker injury.
As the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality noted, the salt and sand used by municipalities for road maintenance and safety contains several elements, including sodium chloride, potassium chloride, calcium chloride and magnesium chloride. All of these substances can contaminate groundwater and drinking water wells. These materials can also be disruptive to the ecological systems of lakes, streams and wetlands.
Salt and sand should be stored in a partially enclosed or covered storage facility so that the substances remain dry and contaminated runoff does not occur. With a fabric building from Winkler Structures, municipalities can prevent runoff, seepage or leakage of salt and sand into public sewers, surface- or groundwater and protected natural areas and waterways.
“Proper storage of salt and sand in a partially enclosed or covered building can prevent runoff and lower costs.”
In addition to preventing runoff, proper storage of salt and sand in a partially enclosed or covered building can lower costs as well. As the New Jersey Department of Water Quality has noted, cleanup from runoff of these materials can sometimes be extremely costly as stormwater can easily carry salt and sand far from the facility, making cleanup fairly extensive.
A building that has an impermeable floor and is completely roofed and walled can reduce costs associated with runoff cleanup, as well as loss of materials during storage or loading and unloading. Winker Structures has several foundation options, that when combined with the resilient tensioned fabric and steel design, are effective in keeping wind and rain out of the storage facility.
Loading and unloading safety
Finally, a proper storage facility should have a wide opening to allow easy access for delivery trucks to reduce the risk of worker injury or material loss associated with loading and unloading salt and sand.
As the Salt Institute has advised, storage buildings should be wide enough for front-end loaders to maneuver freely and expediently while being protected from wind and other weather. Loading areas should also be constructed on an impervious pad. Further, loading and unloading should occur within the covered storage structure to prevent rain from coming into contact with the salt or sand and creating contaminated runoff. A storage space should also have enough room for workers to stand clear of trucks during dumping, and the height of the building should be sufficient to avoid contact with lights or power lines during unloading. With its clear span design and wide range of foundation options, Winkler Structures has a building that can meet any municipal demand.
Winkler Structures built with concrete pad foundations allow a smooth surface that can also be easily cleaned to remove any materials dislodged during unloading. As the Salt Institute noted, solid, flat surfaces are also better for worker safety as they reduce the risk of shifting or collapse of stockpiles that staffers must work around. With structures that range from 14 feet wide up to 120 feet wide, Winker Structures can design a building to meet the length and height required for safe loading and unloading.
Contact Winkler Structures today to learn how a customizable fabric covered building can provide the ideal solution for safe and environmentally responsible storage of municipal salt and sand.