The River Ouse runs close to many of the roads in the Newland area of East Yorkshire, with sheet piled walls used to hold, or channel the water.
One particular stretch was found to be leaking water from behind a sheet piled wall, the result of general aging, with water coming from both rain and the River Ouse itself, specifically the River Aire tributary near Mill Lane. A busy section of road, running adjacent to the piled wall was receiving this water, which during winter was freezing to ice on the surface rendering the road extremely hazardous. Although not a main artery, the road is still an important transport link and subject to high volumes of traffic throughout the day and particularly during rush-hour periods, therefore any prolonged interruptions to its use would have a significant impact to traffic flow through the area.
With the ‘leaking’ a result primarily due to the River Ouse the problem fell under the management of the Environment Agency (EA), which was obviously keen to address the problems as quickly and efficiently as possible and with the minimum of disruption or environmental risk.
The stretch of wall was originally constructed during WWII using labour from Italian Prisoner’s or War and with detailed construction records at the time limited there was uncertainty over the depth of the wall itself, which also impacted on the available remediation options.
The only real alternative option available to solving the problem, would have been to literally dig out the area around the wall, seal the wall itself then recompact the ground. With access already being limited, this solution would have been extremely costly and have considerable impact on the area too.
The EA, having worked with Geobear previously on other projects, contacted the company with a view to trialling its geopolymer solutions to address the leak. The fast, effective and non-disruptive nature of Geobear’s solution, as well as its low environmental impact appealing to the EA. Given the complex and disruptive construction alternatives available to solving the problem, Geobear’s geopolymer solution was an obvious choice over more complex and costly alternative methods.
Geobear’s engineers injected its specialist geopolymer solution into the ground along close to the wall, effectively sealing the leak and at the same time stabilising the surrounding ground. Although the work was initially a trial, many months later there has been no evidence of water leaking, which means the solution has been considered a success by the EA.