Go Plant Fleet Services has made significant investment to bring in a state-of-the-art ‘Gritbuster’ system.
This innovative equipment enables the vast majority of road sweeper and gully waste to be recycled.
The unique machine transforms waste picked up from roads into aggregates – meaning that as little as 10 per cent now goes to landfill.
And it has proved to be a huge success since it was first trialled at the company’s waste treatment facility in Telford.
Paul Langham, Operations Director at Go Plant Fleet Services, said: “We invested more than £600,000 on a one-of-a-kind solution that transforms sweeper and gully waste into secondary aggregates.
“We’re proactively recycling what we sweep off the roads – and that obviously has a positive effect on the environment.
“We’re one of few companies in the UK to have made such an investment in recycling, but we felt it was the right thing for us and for our customers.
“It forms a key part of our proactive environmental policies and our commitment to sustainability – and it has proved to be a great success.”
Ben Gilmore, National Operations Manager, explained how the system delivers both cost and environmental benefits.
He said: “Sampling tests showed it was possible to recover a large percentage of base material if it was correctly treated and we wanted to come up with an innovative approach.
“We carefully considered the options and worked with Gritbuster on the development of a next-generation unit specifically tailored to our type of road sweeper and gully waste operation.
“The collaboration resulted in the development of a state-of-the-art Gritbuster WT 250 machine that delivers greater waste recycling capability than ever before and it was trialled for three years before being introduced at our waste treatment facility in Telford.
“We were the first company in the country to use the WT 250 unit in combination with our diverse range of vehicles – enabling us to offer an added-value service to our clients as well as helping us achieve our objectives to reduce our own carbon footprint and running costs.”
The machine and process can recover up to 92 per cent of road sweeper and gully waste at up to 25 tonnes per hour.
It passes the waste material through a separating trommel, a water/chemical dosing plant and a double-density separator system which delivers an end product consisting of coarse and fine aggregates and organic matter.
The remaining ultrafine particulates suspended in the water are then removed by a combined chemical process passing through a clarifier and filter press to leave a compacted material or ‘cake’.
The now-clean water is then recirculated as part of the process, reducing both clean water consumption and waste water discharge.
Separated materials, which would have previously been taken to landfill, can be used as recycled aggregate, inert fill or pipe bedding.
The recovery offers the most effective method of processing this type of waste and enables local authorities not only to achieve recycling targets but also minimises the amount of material going to landfill – significantly reducing the associated costs of landfill tax and tipping charges.
Go Plant Fleet Services is already developing de-watering facilities at sites in Newcastle, Barnsley and London to ensure its environmental efforts are consistent across its nationwide network.