Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

By Garth Meyer
Gazette Reporter 

Waste Transfer Station vent work almost complete


July 5, 2018 | View PDF

The Whitman County Waste Transfer Station repair project for landfill cells no. 1 to no. 3 nears completion this week, to come in under estimate after re-design work by contractor M.A. DeAtley and Whitman County Public Works.

The project, which began last fall, will improve the cells' gas monitoring system by upgrading venting ports and sample ports, and repairing thick plastic coverings which had settled in spots.

“It's 95 to 98 percent done,” said Mark Storey, Public Works director.

Money saved in the area of fixing drainage features resulted when the re-design work made it so not as much dirt was needed in the cover repair – which was done so moisture runs off the top of the cells instead of into them.

Initially, $80,000 in dirt work – including importing dirt to the site – was in the contract. It was not necessary.

In addition, $12,000 was saved in re-designing a vent.

M.A. DeAtley, of Clarkston, got the job with a quote of $186,925, to build sample ports onto 11 gas vents, to use for monitoring methane gas escaping from the sealed cells, which were filled with garbage from the 1970s to the early 1990s.

Discovered in 2016 on a routine check, two of the gas vent airways – which allow methane gas to escape from the settling cell, covered in 1993 – were found bent over. Attaching new sample ports to each vent allows for improved sampling.

In further inspection, both of the damaged vents were plugged with dirt 6-10 feet down.

Aside from allowing gas to escape, the vents also keep rainwater out.

The project's savings mean a smaller payment will go to the contractor than expected. The work is paid for out of the Transfer Station's Closure and Post-Closure Care fund, which is supplied by $2.50 set aside per ton of garbage processed at the site.


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