Dust control is a continuous process due to our tradewinds. Dust fences contain much of the dirt, but regular watering is also needed. Other methods include maintaining vegetation, seeding or hydromulching as work progresses.
Mud is also a concern. It tries to escape the projects on tires. Trackout is one of the easiest violations to be cited for by the EPA or DOH. Vehicles that enter jobsites must clean tires prior to leaving, especially if they drive on areas without rock. Construction entrances must have a cattle guard or rock over fabric, to keep the mud down. Any mud on the road that can be kicked loose is considered a violation. Road cleaning is needed regularly on wet jobs.
Silt fences prevent water from running off the project and carrying dirt with it. Silt fences need to be restored when they are taken down. Not only does the fence need to be upright, but the bottom edge of the fence needs to be buried 6 inches, or water will flow underneath. There cannot be any gaps in the fence. 18 inches of silt fence should be showing at all times with no gaps.
Keeping the soil clean can also be a challenge on the job. Contamination can come from chemicals, sewage, concrete waste and maintenance work. Chemicals need to be in containment when stored, such as in a plastic lined box. Concrete washout cannot be dumped in the soil, the thin liquid can leach into streams. Washout bins are needed to collect excess concrete and wash water. Vehicle maintenance needs to be done in such a way to prevent spills, such as using plastic sheeting. Accidental spills must be cleaned up immediately, spills kits must be maintained on property.
Some rules to remember:
- If you remove a BMP, such as a silt fence, for access, return it to its proper condition before the end of the shift.
- If you spill chemicals, lube or concrete waste, clean it up, get it off the ground
- Reduce dust with wet methods or HEPA vacuums for concrete cutting or grinding.
- Reduce speed of vehicles to reduce amount of airborne dirt.
- Keep dirt wet, but not saturated.
- Clean up track out, do not wash into drains. May be moved into vegetated areas.
- Ensure that rock entrances are built over fabric, and that the rock is turned or added to when mud collects.
- Do not drive around or avoid the construction entrance. This may damage your tires and create a violation
- Clean your tires!
- Report any suspicious materials to your supervisor or the contractor.
- Maintain proper housekeeping, clean up before you go home. Do not leave sawdust, filings, cuttings, or trash on the jobsite.
- Secure toilets against movement by staking them in place. Wind and rainwater can knock them over, causing a sewage spill.
- Store chemicals inside containers whenever possible. Use a plastic lined bin with plastic cover if storing outside. Protect from flooding.