Field Training in Balgonie

A full day of training was held in Balgonie on June 27.  The training day comprised a site and soils evaluation component and an installation component.

Due to the ability to participate in both a soils evaluation and an install day, the class was split in half, with one group working on soils and another group working on the installation in the morning.  In the afternoon, the groups swapped and those working on the installation went to work on soils while those who had already been in the soils pits, moved over to work on the installation.

Thirty-eight students participated in a demonstration of soils identification and logging. Two test pits were available, one at the crest of a slope and the other at the base of the slope. Due to the locations of the pits, participants were able to see completely different soils profiles, along with gleyed and mottled soils.

On the other side of the site, an Enviro-Septic system was being installed. Participants were able to build the sand bed for the distribution system, install the d-box and venting system and then charge the system and watch the wicking process take place.

Learning was focussed on the following outcomes:


Basic knowledge of how to examine the soil profile and identify

  • Major soil structure features (why it is important is covered in soil/water)
  • Colour – mottles and gleyed soils (washed out gray) identified high water table or saturated soils (reason saturated/unsaturated flow in previous module)
  • Soil texture, make up of sand/silt/clay
  • Effect of gravel component
  • Where to take sample
  • Basic hand texturing procedures
  • Trial hand texturing
  • Lab testing availability and basic knowledge of lab testing method
  • Recognize changes in soil horizons and understanding effect on sewage system design
  • Soils logging using various soils logs
  • Understanding and application of the soil texture triangle
  • Ability to determine effluent-loading rate for a soil texture
  • Know what restricting/limiting layers are and able to recognize major characteristics
  • Ability to recognize major soil characteristics and determine soil effluent loading rates or limitations

Enviro-Septic Installation:

  • review the design and installation of an Advanced Enviro-Septic System
  • Complete site specific calculations and review drawings of the system
  • Installation of the physical treatment system
  • Proper install practices, component placement, and the do’s and don’ts of system installation.

SOWMA would like to thank the following people and organizations for their support of this training day:

  • Dale Benson, DLC Developments Ltd. for providing the training site, excavation equipment and excavation operators.
  • Sponsors:  Chris Seeley, Seeley Engineering & Consulting and FRP Manufacturing (2010) Ltd. for their financial support of this event.
  • Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region for their strong support of this training day and for helping communicate the training opportunity to their contractor group and health officers in neighbouring regions.