Digging up the past of landfill sites
The UK has more than 20,000 former landfill sites. Newer landfills, built since the mid-1990s, are regulated and records are kept of their contents. However, less is known about the contents of older landfills. RSK conducted investigations on a closed landfill near Manchester, UK, to determine the suitability of the site for development by Peel Holdings and Island Gas.
RSK assessed slope stability, settlement and contamination, particularly asbestos content. Using local authorities’ historical records, our specialists produced a conceptual model to identify potential asbestos contamination. The information, along with landfill construction details, was used to produce an investigation plan that was submitted to and approved by the Environment Agency and the local authority.
To prove the soil depth and collect soil samples from various depths, RSK engineers drilled two exploratory boreholes. The soil samples collected were sealed to limit worker exposure and tested in a secure laboratory. Engineers repurposed one of the boreholes as a groundwater monitoring well and collected vital groundwater samples.
Adhering to our strict health and safety ethos, we produced a safe-system-of-work document to protect on-site workers, the local environment and users of nearby land. The document included soil classifications for off-site disposal and detailed the personal protective equipment necessary for intrusive work.