Salt barns help beat the snow – and save money
12 July 2010
Working in partnership
The company is urging councils to make greater use of salt barns – potentially in partnership with neighbouring authorities – in order to be ready for any repeat of last winter’s white-out.
Flexibility for highways teams
The move would offer greater flexibility to highways teams but would also enable them to switch from marine salt, which is widely used, to cheaper rock salt, which is frequently shunned because of being difficult to store in the open air.
Temporary storage facilities
The change could save hundreds of pounds from every salt run, making the temporary storage facilities self-funding – and generating considerable long-term savings for councils.
Robert Alvarez, De Boer’s Sales Director – Commercial, said: “There are significant operational benefits to using covered salt as externally stored salt will absorb moisture resulting in clumping and, potentially, freezing at the very time you need it most.”
Covered salt supplies
He added: “Critically, covered supplies can utilise rock salt, which is roughly £10 a tonne cheaper than outside stored marine salt. Even a relatively simple salt run can consume 40 tonnes and some authorities are using up to 16,000 tonnes every year.
“At this level of consumption, a salt barn can be self funding within a couple of years – and can then contribute significant budget savings for councils.”
De Boer, which is a long-established supplier of temporary and semi-permanent accommodation to the commercial sector, has already secured considerable business from supplying salt barns.
All Weather Hall
The company’s All Weather Hall, which was designed specifically to withstand severe Scandinavian winters, has been used by councils and government departments across Europe for a wide range of storage purposes – from salt and minerals to vehicles, plant and machinery. The structure is re-locatable and re-usable and is available with a clearspan width of up to 50 metres. It even comes with optional additional features such as roller-shutter doors, mechanical extraction systems and advanced lighting and security.
Here in the UK, unitary authorities in the Heads of the Valleys area of South Wales, led by Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council, are currently creating a shared salt barn with total capacity of 10,000 tonnes. The De Boer-built facility measures 30 metres by 44 metres, providing much-needed additional storage and is ideally located in a central position covering some of Britain’s highest and more exposed towns and villages.
As well as offering financial benefits at a time of central and local government cutbacks, salt barns provide safety advantages for highways staff, according to De Boer. Robert Alvarez explained: “We have heard reports of crews using pry-bars to break up lumps of salt within gritters, a practice that takes time, may not always be carried out in a safe and controlled manner and inevitably damages the gritter as crews attack the salt clumps with a long steel bar. Storing salt internally helps keep it in a much better condition.”
- De Boer supports Centrepoint’s Winter Whites Gala as Prince William takes centre stage
- De Boer delivers for 40th anniversary of leading oil industry exhibition
- De Boer hits a high note at The National Eisteddfod of Wales
- De Boer back in action as London celebrates Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games
- De Boer Structures tees off at top UK golf events
- De Boer zooms into the fast lane with a hot new Citroën at Goodwood Festival of Speed
- De Boer Structures hits all the right notes at Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park
- De Boer hits a high note with stunning country house opera auditorium
- De Boer’s cool Floral Marquee blossoms at RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show
- De Boer creates stunning venue for charity dinner headlined by Gary Barlow
- De Boer serves up an ace at Wimbledon with Detail’s new-look Gatsby Club
- De Boer Creates RHS Chelsea Flower Show’s Centenary ‘Great Pavilion’
- De Boer provides New College Oxford with a temporary dining hall
- De Boer’s high-speed emergency response to Lytchett Minster's devastating fire
- De Boer team don decorated bras for marathon Moonwalk charity challenge
- De Boer structures played a key role at London 2012 Olympics
- De Boer's salt barn saves Dudley Council thousands of pounds each year
- De Boer quickly builds temporary facility for Lytchett Minster School’s creative arts centre destroyed by fire
- New international role for De Boer UK Managing Director Peter Spruce