By Kevin Whyrick, EnviroTech Services
Check out all the latest industry tips and tricks coming straight to you from
the experts at EnviroTech Services.
For winter maintenance agencies and contractors, snow and ice control is a vital function of their work providing safe conditions for the public. Using an innovative product that reduce costs, improves safety, and mitigates environmental impacts is increasingly important.
No standard exists for determining when snow and ice accumulation is severe enough that it will endanger patrons or employees. In most cases, managers and supervisors must use their own judgment to alter work practices based on changes in weather conditions. Just plowing or shoveling snow cannot prevent slippery conditions for pedestrians, 90% of walkway injuries happen with less than 1 inch of snow. Just a thin layer of snow is all it takes to make the difference between a sidewalk with traction and a slippery mess. If sidewalks are not cleared properly, liability falls on the property owner. Facility managers need to understand anti-icing and de-icing technologies and the relative best practices to employ. To protect yourself from slip-and-fall lawsuits, you can:
The fundamental snow and ice control strategies in winter maintenance include: Anti-icing, Deicing, Pre-wetting, and Pretreating.
The industry’s most innovative salt brine enhancer for deicing / anti-icing:
Accelerate. Maintain. Protect.
Greeley, CO: Today, EnviroTech Services Inc., a leader in deicing products for more than 28 years, has announced the release of a cutting edge new salt brine enhancer that can make roads safer while reducing the costs to accomplish that. EnviroTech’s new AMP product helps to accelerate ice melt and thereby provides drivers with improved traction on the road, maintaining safety. AMP not only melts ice faster, but it helps the salt brine stick to the road which maintains this protection for a longer period of time thereby reducing application frequency required which lower costs significantly for large Municipalities and commercial operations. And studies have shown that the addition of AMP helped to reduce corrosion by 70% compared to salt brine alone.
EnviroTech is proud to announce that our new salt brine enhancing product AMP, has received approval from the Pacific Northwest Snowfighters Association (PNS). PNS members are a collection of transportation agencies throughout the states of Washtington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, Colorado, as well as British Columbia. The guidelines established by PNS assist users in product selection by requiring that approved products:
The topic of how to treat areas with unique or highly sensitive ecological needs has been long standing within dust control markets. The days of using things like waste oil to treat roads are long gone, and the vast majority of vetted products present very little risk to the environments they enter. Still, there are outlying areas that cannot tolerate chlorides at any significant level. Places like the Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge, which have precious and biologically diverse wetlands to preserve.
And although places like Squaw Creek have a growing number of chloride free products to choose from – the issue is not so easily settled. Why? Because many of these products simply do not perform. Just like calorie free sweeteners or soy based veggie burgers, it can be hard to remove an element or ingredient and still get the punch we want. It is the classic consumer tradeoff that good product developers constantly look to close. durablend-C™ is EnviroTech’s latest step forward in this quest.
For Squaw Creek, however, maintaining its ecology was about more than finding a decent sugar free coffee sweetener. As such, they entered into a rigorous screening process to identify products worthy of including in an on-site study. In short, durablend-C™ passed the test. And not just because it did not have an adverse interaction with the wetlands. It passed because it worked. A single application of durablend-C™ that incorporated ESI’s proprietary Compact & Cap™ program performed as well or better than two applications of the alternative product tested over the same timeline without compromising the ecosystem.
Application of durablend-C™
“Custom Solutions”. “Cutting Edge Technology”. “Consultative Sales Approach”. Ah, the buzzwords of sales and marketing. They adorn conversations with sales people the way neon lights bring ambiance to a pool hall. But what do they mean and do they deliver more than just a shiny light to stare at while having a cold brew?
Similar to how EnviroTech has worked diligently to bring sound science to our dust control and deicing industries (as well as others), we are taking concrete steps to turn the buzzwords of sales and marketing into tangible results. The latest version of this takes the form of a piece of equipment known as a Hamburg Wheel Tracking Test (HWT), which gives ESI a wholly unique testing capability for our dust control and road maintenance customers.
The HWT was developed in Germany and gives ESI the ability to run side by side tests that compare the nuanced balance between product selection, application rate, native soil, expected traffic patterns, and anticipated weather. So, instead of running field tests (which are more expensive and time consuming) to get the optimal mixture of product type and application, ESI can work with you to get the right combination before any field applications occur. Here’s how it worked in a recent test:
Spider mites are a real threat to orchards, vineyards and many other crop fields. An integrated approach to managing mite populations is crucial, and proper dust control is a critical component. However, conventional dust control products, such as those used on industrial sites, are not conducive to plant health. Lignosulfonate, a byproduct of wood-pulp processing, is a popular choice for agricultural dust control, but has limitations, not the least of which are product consistency and erratic availability. EnviroTech Services, Inc. manufactures a dust control product that provides superior, consistent and enduring dust control without exposing fields to the undesirable components of conventional dust control products.
The least expensive dust control solutions, magnesium or calcium chloride treatments, are undesirable in agriculture and other alternative dust control products can poison the living soil necessary for healthy plant life. When evaluating the best options, the field of available products narrows rapidly.
The concept of product development is pretty simple. How do we either improve on an existing product or create something superior that is a replacement product? Less simple, however, is the process of testing, documenting, and verifying the improvements sought. This can be particularly tricky for consumers who can find themselves comparing performance claims between products they may not fully understand. Add to that the consideration for managing costs associated with switching to a new product as well as ensuring apple to apple cost comparisons, and the introduction of new products can feel more burdensome than exciting.
As a transportation, site, or project manager, selecting a dust control product is just one of many tasks you’d like to be as efficient as possible in making. With the proliferation of both Calcium and Magnesium chloride, it can seem as though these products are interchangeable, which reduced decision making to just pricing and availability. This belief can be reinforced if you are working with a company that only has access to one supply source, as they intend to simplify your thought process while buying. But if you want to maximize your performance and cost effectiveness, it’s worth going one step further in understanding how these two different products work. Here’s a quick guide you can use.