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Align, a key contractor on High Speed 2 (HS2), has developed, in partnership with a manufacturer, a clever way at reducing the use of plastic on sites.
Align is a joint venture formed of three large construction firms, Bouygues Travaux Publics, Sir Robert McAlpine, and VolkerFitzpatrick, who have been awarded contracts to work on two key HS2 projects, the Chilterns Tunnels and Colne Valley Viaduct.
On review of items regularly consumed by staff resulted in single-use / disposable plastic overshoe covers coming high on the list, with over 100,000 being used by Align on a monthly basis.
To help reduce or find an alternative, Align began discussions with one of their suppliers, OnSite Support Ltd located in Crawley.
Using plastic from recycled bottles, OnSite Support Ltd has created a reusable overshoe protector, with three different sizes.
Each pair is made from six recycled plastic bottles. They can be washed making it reusable and feature an anti-slip sole to ensure grip on a range of surfaces. After only one month of being used, Align saw a big drop in littering on sites and now more sustainable and on track for ensuring 70% of all plastic is either recycled or reused at the end of each project.
Putting New Reusable Overshoes On // Credit HS2
Managing Director of OnSite Support Ltd Warren Lynes said: “We pride ourselves on driving innovation in the construction sector and want to play our part in ensuring that Britain’s new railway is delivered in an environmentally sustainable way.
“We saw huge potential in the idea put forward by Align and were eager to accept their challenge to design a product that would not only perform better environmentally but deliver health and safety benefits too.”
Waste Manager for the Align Joint Venture Carl Baker said: “This is a fantastic initiative and a great example of how we continue to challenge ourselves to drive excellence and respect the natural environment in the delivery of HS2.
“Early trials show that the shoes not only provide better grip, but they can be washed too. This means they can last for over six weeks, which really helps to reduce single use plastic waste. From concept to delivery, this simple idea has proven to be a great success.”
This article first appeared on www.railadvent.co.uk
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