Have you considered hydraulics?
Today during our April Health and Safety Meeting, we dissected the topic of hydraulic hoists and elevators that we may come across as a part of Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs). During Phase I ESAs our goal is to find current or historical potential environmental risks to a property, which is like making a map for more intrusive assessment methods. The clearer the information for that map, the better.
This is where the hydraulic hoists and elevators come in, both old (removed) ones and new. Hydraulic hoists can be above- or in-ground and the location of the hydraulic fluid tank (which contains oil) can vary, which affects the risk level. Similar to a buried fuel tank, buried hydraulic reservoirs and hydraulic pistons have the potential to leak. Similarly, hydraulic elevators come in multiple forms where the depth of potential impact varies with the depth that the elevator piston can reach. As you might guess, it can take some sleuthing to find all the facts! During our site inspections we look for evidence of old hoists in the form of cutout and re-poured concrete, and we ask a lot of weird questions - but we promise there is a reason we’re asking them.