Legal Options for Concrete Washouts
By Marcus Kirkwood
We’ve all been there before. Do you do what’s easy or do you do what’s right and/or legal? When it comes to concrete washouts, there’s a broad spectrum of ‘efforts’ from complete disregard
to “I sort of tried”
to using kids swimming pools that are being made illegal for obvious reasons
As guidelines for legal concrete washout grow more strict, our options for legal disposal are growing right alongside them. So what is legal and what are the best options for you?
The most common legal options are as follows:
1. A semi-permanent pit dug into the ground or created with hay bales and lined with plastic.
2. On-site services that provide you a metal pan and removal services.
3. Allowing concrete wash out to fully dry before taking it to a concrete recycling facility.
4. Temporary polypropylene or corrugated washouts.
What are the pros and cons of each?
1. A semi-permanent hole can be a real challenge when it comes to space on a job site. Once that hole is dug or those hay bales are placed, you’re generally looking at an 80-100 square foot loss of space. On the bright side, apart from labor, it’s as cheap as a piece of plastic. The most important aspect of this approach is being able to afford the space for a long, long time as things immobile and have to dry out before proper disposal.
2. Washout removal services are an excellent option if you’ve got the cash, recurring need, and space. Often times, this option can get underutilized and overpriced. The good news is, you’re not stuck in one spot for the whole job and the mess is generally out of your hands.
3. The pros and cons of allowing the washout to fully dry. This can take weeks and in some cases months. That space on your job is unusable for however long that takes. When it’s complete, you have to spend your time preparing, moving and dumping the material in an approved location, which can often bring added expenses.
4. Temporary polypropylene and corrugated washouts are popping up everywhere. It seems like Outpak has their product everywhere. Why the sudden explosion? Their two most popular items, the corrugated washout, and the all-weather poly washout, which includes lifting straps and a cover, are versatile, foldable and inexpensive.
We’ve found that a key to compliance in any OSHA or EPA requirement is ease of access to products that make compliance possible. Having a few of Outpak’s washouts stashed away in the corner of a connex (they’re only a couple of inches thick when folded up) is an easy way to keep your job free from EPA fines. Having a few bottles of their slurry solution allows you to dry your washout in a matter of minutes and toss it in a dumpster. Yes, it turns an array of hazardous wastes into EPA compliant matter that’s landfill ready. For many, Outpak washouts are the most versatile, space conscious and financially savvy solution to hazardous waste disposal.