Silt Curtains and Turbidity Barriers


Chemical spill kits

If you regularly build or work on water or are planning a building project that will occur on or near water, a silt curtain or turbidity barrier will help you to keep the water clean while you work while avoiding liability for pollution and environmental damages. When you work in or around water, it is easy to stir up sediment or release chemicals into the water. It is illegal to release or stir up too much sediment (turbidity) in a natural water source, and it is also illegal to release certain amounts of certain chemicals frequently used in construction, include oil or fuel, into a natural water supply.

Silt curtains, oil containment booms, and other equipment can help to contain excess turbidity and releases of fuel and other contaminants and filter them out of the water. A turbidity curtain can also control the release of toxic organic contaminants into the water supply, preventing harm to marine life and liability for you. Sometimes, like in ocean settings, silt curtains need to be made from a specially made and anchored fabric that allows water to pass through in either direction, but still blocks silt and other contaminants, like when the direction of the tide changes. Silt curtains need to be properly anchored in these situations so that water can flow, but the anchors will not be pulled free. In a running current, anchoring the silt curtain parallel to the water flow will help to keep it stable. Silt curtains should always be regularly inspected while in use to make sure that breaches and anchor loss do not occur or are quickly repaired to avoid liability. Silt curtains and oil spill response equipment can be essential to ensuring that your next waterside or in water project are successes that do not incur environmental liability for you and that do not harm wildlife or the environment.

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