Reuse of Dry Excavation Spoils Can Save Your Clients Money

Reuse of Dry Excavation Spoils Can Save Your Clients Money

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When Bradley Tanks Inc. in Danville, California, bought its first Dino Series suction-excavation truck from Germany-based MTS GmbH, company officials were curious about how it would produce out in the field — especially compared to hydroexcavators.

The verdict is that it's very comparable, says Kelly Graser, BTI’s director of compliance. The Dino trucks typically can excavate 30 to 50 cubic yards of material per day, which is in line with what a hydroexcavating truck can produce. The real difference comes in what Graser calls the “total cost of project ownership,” referring to the significant expenses associated with hauling and disposing of waste.

As an example, Graser cites a project in California’s Central Valley where one Dino worked for eight months in 2018, exposing all the underground infrastructure at a utility station undergoing a rebuild. “It was a maze of pipes ranging from 12 to 48 inches in diameter,” she says. “And because there was no mechanical digging allowed, the Dino was exactly what the client needed.”

One Dino worked at the site five days a week. After eight months, the Dino had produced 1,700 cubic yards of excavated material. “And 100% of it was reused on site,” Graser reports. “The client was happy about that.”

Being able to reuse the spoil probably saved the customer about $150,000 in materials-import, transportation and disposal costs. “And because the project was so remotely located, the ability to use that native material on site was significant,” she adds. “There was no nearby facility to accept spoil for disposal, nor was there a nearby quarry that could supply new backfill material.”

The type of soil being excavated affects productivity. Hardpan clay, for instance, will slow down a Dino the same way it would dampen a hydroexcavating truck’s productivity. But just as hydroexcavators use different water nozzles for dealing with different soil conditions, the Dino’s various tool attachments come into play, she says.

“The Dino can also handle wet material,” she adds. “It can excavate in wet soil and suck up water, as well as gravel and cobble. I call it the world’s largest shop vac. That’s how versatile it is.”


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