AllSweep model efficiently handles rubber tire infill removal from playground

Profile 09 : New Philadelphia, OH

Schools and municipalities throughout the country are re-examining playgrounds and other recreational areas that have been surfaced with rubber infill – bits of tires that have been shredded and ground into strips, pieces and crumbs to cushion the falls of children. Earlier studies had shown that the rubber scraps helped to reduce playground injuries that currently result in over 200,000 trips to U.S. emergency rooms every year. While some parents complained that the playground surfaces left black material on children’s clothing, arms and legs, more recent EPA studies now suggest the rubber infill may contain dangerous chemicals. When the material is warm, it also may emit gases that can be inhaled. Acting cautiously, some schools, day care centers and municipalities are looking for efficient, economical ways to remove the rubber infill and replace it with a proven safer, alternative material.

The Vacall versatility advantage

Buckeye Career Center in New Philadelphia, Ohio, was one of those schools that decided to address removal of a 10-inch deep layer of rubber infill in a 41- by 76-foot playground area adjacent to its pre-school training facility.

"We approached the nearby headquarters of Gradall Industries, Inc., and inquired about the capabilities of its Vacall vacuum machines," said Kelly Ricklic, maintenance supervisor at the school. "Gradall welcomed the opportunity to test Vacalls on a specialized job, and we were very happy with the results.”

A compact track loader owned by the school was used to push the rubber infill material to the edge of the playground, where it was extracted with a catch basin cleaner hose mounted at the rear of the debris tank on a Vacall AllSweep machine. The catch basin cleaner option is available with eight or 12-inch diameter hoses, significantly expanding the versatility of the machines for ditch cleaning, leaf pickup and more.

Independent tests show AllSweep models equipped with a 35-inch fan can deliver a maximum air flow of 31,000 CFM – the best in the industry. When they are equipped with gutter brooms on both sides of the machine, AllSweep models also have the widest sweeping path in the industry, making them ideal for high-performance cleanup in parking lots, airport runways, road resurfacing milling removal and other jobs.

Removing the 80-plus cubic yards of rubber infill involved filling and then dumping the machine's 10-cubic-yard debris tank several times – a process that was made more efficient by the tailgate design that opens, closes and locks hydraulically. "We were very pleased with the work that helped us transition to a more natural playground," said Superintendent Bob Alsept. After the rubber infill removal, the area was filled with soil and converted to a natural playground with grass, a garden and some timbers for low-level climbing.

Learn more about Vacall AllSweep Models here.
For a demo, call 330-339-2212. Vacall products are designed, manufactured and supported by Gradall Industries, Inc., a world leader in pioneering hydraulic technologies.

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