UTAH'S FLOOD WATCH
Utah company offers free cyclone sand to help prepare for flooding
Mar 29, 2023, 7:15 PM | Updated: Apr 17, 2023, 11:52 am
BLUFFDALE, Utah — Geneva Rock, a Utah-based company known for producing ready-mix concrete, is getting attention for another product.
It is known as cyclone sand and Geneva Rock has a lot of it at its Bluffdale plant.
“There is 80,000 tons in this pile right now,” Jay Ritchie said, pointing to one big pile of sand.
Ritchie, president of Geneva Rock, said cyclone sand is different from regular sand. It has a finer texture and a greater density when packed.
“Regular sand, it has more openings and holes, the water is going to be able to flow through it. This, it is so dense, it will absorb the water and hold the water back,” he said.
That makes cyclone sand perfect for sandbags.
With so many Utah communities concerned about potential flooding this spring because of the heavy winter snowpack in the mountains, Geneva Rock has decided to give it to Utah cities and counties for free.
The company has already supplied 10 cities along the Wasatch Front with cyclone sand.
“We understand and know some people are going to have real challenges coming up and we want to be a part of the solution to help them with that problem,” Ritchie said.
Alpine and Springville are two of the cities that brought dump trucks to Geneva Rock’s Mount Jordan pit on Wednesday.
The cyclone sand is loaded onto their trucks and transported to where it is needed.
“We feel it is important to take precautions and make the sandbags available to our residents,” Shane Sorensen, Alpine’s city administrator and public works director said. “We have 25,000 sandbags on hand and have another 10,000 on order.”
The cyclone sand Alpine got from Geneva Rock is placed in a pile outside the city’s public works building. Residents can fill sandbags for their personal use for free.
“It’s a good barrier to keep water where you want it,” Sorensen said.
For cities, the free sand is a way to save money, knowing that flood preparations may be more important than ever.
“It’s a great donation by them to all of the residents around here,” Sorensen said. “It is very unusual up here to have snow this low at this time of year.”
With the amount of snow still in the mountains, it all depends on how fast it melts. Geneva Rock said it will keep helping cities and counties as long as possible.
“As long as we’re producing sand, we’re producing cyclone sand along with it,” Ritchie said. “We’re happy to help.”
If cities are interested in the free cyclone sand, they can contact Geneva Rock. They will also ship the sand to communities but will charge a shipping fee to do so.