• “Silly Putty” Clays

    By:Triad Engineering

    unique soil samples

    “Silly Putty” Clays

    bad for foundations, good for containment of environmental contaminants


    Environmental scientist Carol Phillips couldn’t believe her eyes retrieving soil samples from a subsurface exploration she was performing to check for metal, volatile organic compounds and other potential environmental contaminants. Pulling the sleeves from the borings, she discovered thick, high plasticity clays of a beautiful array of colors. From a very light lavender color to an almost turquoise color and bright orange sand layer, this was one of the most exciting soil samples she has ever seen.

    “Phoning a friend,” Carol reached out to Rhea Sublett, staff geologist who offered some background information on the lacustrine deposits from the glacial Lake Monongahela, the region of her subsurface exploration. Lake Monongahela was formed a few hundred thousand years ago during an ice age where the glaciers dammed river flow to create a lake extending from approximately Pittsburgh, PA south to Clarksburg, WV. Lake Monongahela no longer exists, but after the glacier receded, its waters created what is now the Ohio River.

    The unique history of Lake Monongahela has created fascinating and challenging geologic patterns and conditions in and around Morgantown. The fine-grained lacustrine deposits are the consistency of Silly Putty and often extend up to 80 feet below existing grades. The shrinking and swelling clay materials are problematic for building foundations and construction. However, the thick make-up of the clay materials may help slow or prevent the spread of potential environmental contaminants on the property being evaluated in Carol’s study.

    Offering geotechnical engineering, environmental consulting and our many other services in house creates amazing opportunities for collaboration and learning. At Triad, we’re grateful for our diverse, complementary service offerings and our talented staff.


    By:Triad Engineering

    Triad’s Safety Employee of the Month:  October

    This month we would like to recognize Kevin Benecki, Engineering Technician for the Sterling office. Kevin recognizes that safety is of utmost importance for Triad, and for our industry as a whole. Kevin does a great job promoting Triad’s safety culture to new technicians and we firmly believe that his actions help them be more safety-oriented while working on busy construction sites. Thank you Kevin for helping spread the all-important “Safety First” message for Triad.

  • Safety Spotlight: September

    By:Vanessa Ervin

    Triad’s Safety Employee of the Month: September

    This month we would like to recognize Cindy Thurber, office admin for the Hagerstown office. Throughout this pandemic, all of our office admins have been on the front lines ensuring our offices are safe, clean spaces. Cindy has made hand sanitizer, posted reminders in visible public spaces to remind staff of specific regulations Triad has in place related to COVID, like filling out our Daily JHA and Attendance Report Forms. More than our physical safety and well-being concerns, Cindy contributes to a positive work environment and makes everyone feel welcome. Her efforts are noticed and appreciated more than she knows.

  • Safety Spotlight: August

    By:Vanessa Ervin

    Triad Safety Employee of the Month: August

    Danny Willett, Engineering Technician in Triad’s Morgantown office, was strongly operational in the field throughout the beginning stages of Covid-19’s impact and was very conscientious of not only our policies as it pertains to Covid-19 but the policies and various monitoring procedures outlined by numerous clients. He has worked in the Morgantown QC department for a little over a year and has a firm grasp on Triads current and evolving safety culture. He routinely provides key feedback on projects and strives to maintain a safe working practice for himself and others.

  • Would you like to restore native plants to your property?

    By:Triad Engineering

    WV Restoration Planting Tool:

    Would you like to restore native plants to your property?

    native plants, West Virginia

    The West Virginia Restoration Planting Tool matches your property with known native plant communities in West Virginia and predicts plant species that will thrive and provide great habitat for native fauna, including birds & butterflies.

    The tool can be used for wetland and upland habitats.  It requires Microsoft Office Access software and an Internet connection and is available to the public at https://dep.wv.gov/WWE/getinvolved/Pages/Restoration-Planting-Tool.aspx

    This tool is wonderful for private landowners wishing to enhance their property.

    For larger and more complex projects, Triad is able to complete a site restoration or planting plan and can incorporate a creative planting plan into your project or construction stormwater permit. Triad can create planting plans for citizens, community groups, and private industry to address issues including: slope stabilization, construction site reclamation, improving forage production on hillside pastures, address problems associated with concentrated livestock, reclamation of mined lands, streambank stabilization, agro-forestry, wildlife habitat improvement, and others.

    To contact a Triad office closest to your location, visit the contact us page.