Have you ever been trapped in a downpour? Who hasn’t, right? While people are busy scrambling to open their umbrellas, something else irritating is happening right under their feet. Rainfall from side streets, curbs and gutters swiftly rises over the shoes of people caught in the storm, with gallons of water flowing down the streets, sidewalks and alleyways.
And we all know what is being carried along with the water, don’t we?
There is a Serious Problem With Storm Water Runoff
Aside from soaking shoes, that same rainwater accumulates pollutants – dirt, grit, and particles – that are then washed into storm sewers. That’s when the big problem arises. Governments have demanded that municipalities find a way to limit the amount of runoff that flows into sewer treatment facilities. When these treatment plants are overloaded with rainfall, the excess water ends up in rivers, lakes, and streams.
One option and a good solution that has become popular in some key areas of the country is the use of permeable pavement. It is used specifically to allow rain to soak through it into the ground, basically filtering out pollutants. While permeable pavement can’t be used in highways because it can’t support heavy truck traffic, it’s becoming a popular material for parking lots, pedestrian walkways, driveways, overflow parking areas, and residential roads.
The absorbent surface is excellent for reducing storm sewer overflows at sewage plants, but there is still a concern. The same material that lets rainwater seep into it and through to the ground beneath can also become clogged with sand, sediment, and even large pieces of debris. In effect, there is a limit on the amount of water the pavement can absorb and allow to pass through and, therefore, water pollution is reduced but not eliminated.
Permeable Pavement is Not an Alternative To Good Cleaning
This problem reminds us of an important fact: parking lot sweeping services are still an absolute must. It’s a good idea to replace paved parking lots with materials that absorbs and filters polluted water and reduces the amount that flows into our sewer systems, but it really only works well in conjunction with regular parking lot sweeping. The pavement is not a substitute for a good cleaning service.
There are actually two categories of porous materials that can be used as permeable pavement:
• The first one lets water soak directly into it through surface pores, such as specially treated asphalt and concrete – mixed without fine particles – as well as pavement constructed with crumbled, treated tire rubber.
• The second is a sequence of interconnecting waterproof blocks – concrete pavers or grid pavers – that lets water flow down between them.
These kinds of surfaces must be kept clean in order to maintain their permeability and to allow the rainwater to move through the surface or between the gaps unhampered.
Vacuum Parking Lot Sweeping
Due to environmental concerns and requirements for cleaning various parking lot surfaces, the need for quality vacuum sweeper machines was created:
• Vacuum sweepers comprise 5% of the market in the United States.
• Broom sweepers, on the other hand, account for 60% to 70% of the market.
• Air sweepers have about 20% to 30% share of the market.
Vacuum sweepers are considered to be the best choice for cleaning permeable surfaces and are preferred for parking lot sweeping.
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