In the News
Planners in Cumbria have given the go-ahead for two new vaults at the UK’s Low Level Waste Repository (LLWR), along with an extension to a third vault.
The LLWR was opened in 1957 as the only UK location for the disposal of solid waste containing low levels of radioactivity. It provides an essential service for NDA sites as well as other industries that produce low level waste(LLW). More than £100 million has been invested in the site’s infrastructure over the past decade to maintain it as an important national asset.
A mine waste water treatment scheme in north-east England is removing over 98% of the metals from drainage from old ironstone mines which feed into Saltburn Gill.
In 1999 a large mine water outbreak occurred which flowed into the gill quickly turning the stream a bright orange colour. This severely impacted the fish and river insects and smothered the stream bed in the gill and Skelton Beck. It also affected the bathing water quality on the beach.
Following initial work, the Coal Authority was asked, in 2013, to develop and build a mine water treatment scheme because of our expertise in treating water at historical mining sites. The treatment scheme works by using four lagoons, with cascades and a drying bed, to remove the iron from the raw mine water. The mine water is pumped to the top of aeration cascades and over a period of two days it flows down through each settlement lagoon where the majority of the iron settles. The sludge is then transferred through underground pipes from the bottom of the lagoons through into the drying bed where it is collected and removed. The treated water then passes through a polishing reed bed that acts as a further filter.
Provisional annual data for work-related fatal accidents in Great Britain’s workplaces has been released by the HSE.
The long term trend has seen the rate of fatalities more than halve over the last 20 years. However, provisional figures indicate that 144 people were killed while at work in 2015/2016 – up from 142 in 2014/5.
The new figures show the rate of fatal injuries in key industrial sectors:Forty three workers died in construction, the same as the average for the previous five years. In agriculture there were twenty-seven deaths (compared to the five-year average of thirty-two). In manufacturing there were twenty-seven deaths (compared to five-year average twenty-two), but this figure includes three incidents that resulted in a total of eight deaths. There were six fatal injuries to workers in waste and recycling, compared to the five-year average of seven, but subject to considerable yearly fluctuation.
There were also 103 members of the public fatally injured in accidents connected to work in 2015/16, of which thirty-six (35 percent) related to incidents occurring on railways.