Winter comes every year between June and September bringing with it tons of snow and ice everywhere. The extremely cold temperatures are unbearable with thick ice everywhere making roads and pathways impassable. Ice mounting everywhere becomes a hindrance to people’s daily businesses and this becomes a problem. We cannot control the climate (at least not to the point of doing away with winter) but we could definitely control formation of the ice forming on our roads, around our backyards and on our doorsteps.
Ice control is not easy, though possible and a number of methods are used. The different ice control measures are discussed below:
Salt is poured on ice for deicing purposes. Salt acts as an impurity which lowers the melting point of ice, thus accelerating the melting process. However, the right salts should be used to avoid environmental side effects. In addition, the right amounts of salts should also be carefully considered as research shows that a teaspoon of salt could pollute up to five gallons of fresh water. We do not want to put such huge amount of essential water to waste, do we?
Different salts are used for deicing depending on the location and amount of ice. These salts include:
1. Calcium chloride.
This salt lowers ice’s melting point to -20 degrees Fahrenheit. It is mostly preferred because it is fast and less harmful to concrete. The cons however, are that it corrodes metal and leaves a slimy residue behind.
It lowers the melting point of ice to -15 degrees Fahrenheit. Urea is normally used as a fertilizer and is also pet safe. This factor makes it the choice for veterinarians and animal hospitals. On the other hand however, over applying urea could be harmful to plants. On top of that it also encourages the growth of algae.
3. Sodium chloride.
It lowers the melting point of ice to 15 degrees Fahrenheit. Although it is cheap, efficient and less harmful to concrete, it damages vegetation and corrodes metal leading to environmental impacts.
4. Sand may also be used though it does not alter the melting point of ice. Its coarseness provides traction regardless of the temperature.
Many businesses hire contractors or call on the Public Works Department to manually clear ice off their premises. This is especially where the ice has mounted on the parking lots. The TrucBrush truck is used for this purpose. The truck possesses polypropylene bristles which dislodge ice along pathways and on rooftops without causing any damages. Moreover, the truck is quick, safe and economical. Manually removing ice may be preferred because it is fast in comparison to waiting for the sun to clear away the ice. Most importantly, it is environmental friendly and neither does it harm vegetation nor does it corrode metal.
Numerous accidents related to ice control
have been reported and have led to serious injuries and even death. We must limit this liability and keep everyone safe. Businesses are responsible for ensuring the safety of their employees and customers. Necessary ice control measures have to be put to place and also at the same time consider their side effects to the environment.
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