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Investigation of re-use options for used traction sand.
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    Final. Jan. 2008-June 2010.
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  • Abstract:
    The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) uses approximately 24,000 tons of traction sand annually,

    especially in mountain locations. Once traction sand is applied, street sweepers reclaim approximately 50% of the

    sand, which is either stockpiled at a maintenance facility or disposed of in a landfill. The remaining 50% is left on the

    roadway and can collect in water quality ponds and rivers due to precipitation events.

    This research project consolidated physical and chemical characterization data on reclaimed traction sand from

    multiple mountainous areas in Colorado. The Principal Investigator determined that heavy metal contamination in the

    reclaimed sand is within naturally occurring levels and does not pose a risk to human health through the comparison to

    natural background and risk-based soil values. Additional volatile organic compounds and semi-volatile organic

    compound characterization sampling is required for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment

    (CDPHE) to approve beneficial re-uses.

    A simple bench-scale composting test was conducted to determine if elevated petroleum levels could be reduced

    through natural bioremediation. These results indicated that the simple actions did not reduce the levels to below

    regulatory levels.

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