Environmental Effects of Ancient Timber Pile

Environmental Effects of Ancient Timber Pile
Editor: Allison Braswell 

J.B. Coxwell Contracting, Inc is constructing a Four Seasons hotel across from Gator Bowl Stadium in Jacksonville, FL. The project involves drilling concrete pile for its foundation, but something beneath the surface is causing an obstruction -- 100-year-old timber pile originally installed for a shipyard in the 1920s. 

At one point in history, timber pile was the preferred construction material because of its low cost and high availability. To prevent decay, the piles are treated with coal tar creosote, which is a mixture of hundreds of chemicals including poly-cyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and phenol. Over time, humans that encounter these chemicals; even in insignificant amounts; may experience skin irritations, stomach pains, and liver or kidney problems. Long-term exposure is linked to skin cancer according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 

People do not have to work in wood preserving facilities to be exposed to creosote. The chemical can leach from the timber structures into surrounding soil and groundwater, tainting drinking water and the marine food chain from which Jacksonville's tourists enjoy Mayport shrimp with a side of hush-puppies. The best way to limit the potential impact of contaminated piles on the environment is to completely remove the old timber piles and, if building a new foundation in its place, use piles with inert properties such as concrete or steel to help protect the community and the environment. 

To aid in the project, the contractor looked to the deep foundation experts at International Construction Equipment, Inc (ICE®), who recommended the ICE® 28C Vibratory Extractor to remove the 35-40' (ft) timber piles. The Coxwell team was extremely impressed with the performance of the ICE® 28C and noticed a significant improvement in their production time compared to a competitor's vibratory hammer that they used previously. ICE® applauds the efforts of J.B. Coxwell to improve water quality and public health in northeastern Florida, as well as giving us the opportunity to show them what our equipment can do! Future hotel guests and those in the surrounding area can now rest assured that harmful contaminants in their groundwater will be of their least concern during their stay. 

Learn more about the ICE® 28C


Media Contact-    
Pollyanna Cunningham, MA, MBA    
Vice President Marketing, Brand and Media Relations  

Vice President IT and IT Comm 
ICE® - International Construction Equipment, Inc    
Office - 704-821-8200    
Email - marketing@iceusa.com   

Posted in Vibratory Pile Hammers. Tagged as 28C Vibratory Hammer, Environmental Impacts.

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