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Petroleum Hydrocarbon Contamination of Soil at a Commercial Trailer Truck Parking Facility at Alesa Eleme, Rivers State, Nigeria.

Ini. U. Ubong1, Charles Obunwo2

 DOI :


Soil quality, Petroleum Hydrocarbons and selected heavy metals were determined at the trailer truck park at Alesa community, Eleme, Rivers State. Soil samples were collected from three diffèrent locations including a control at  0-15cm depths. The control was collected away from the contaminated soil and the following parameters were determined: pH value, parcticle size, total nitrogen, potassium, avalable phosphorus. conductivity, organic carbon, organic matter, total organic carbon, total hydrocarbon, total petroleum hydrocarbon, textural content, magnesium, calcium, cadmium, chromium, vanadium, Nickel,  zinc, and lead  using standard method of Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry. The result showed that the Trailer park contributed to high level of nutrients, hydrocarbons and heavy metals. The concentrations of the samples were: pH (7.64-8.10), Conductivity (54-107) µS/cm, phosphorus (0.11-0.53) mg/kg, Sodium (56.82-104.49 mg/kg), calcium (1403.99-1540.96) mg/kg magnesium (614.94-711.33,) mg/kg ; potassium (85.24-193.81) mg/kg, THC (28.5-9214.1) mg/kg, TPH (21.44-160.6,) mg/kg, TOC (0.897-3.276) %, Organic Carbon (0.54- 3.43)%, cadmium  (0<0.001-0.21) mg/kg, Chromium (8.08-9.96) mg/kg, vanadium (0.01-0.54) mg/kg, Nickel (0.22-8.08,) mg/kg, zinc (14 .03-59.17) mg/kg and  lead (6.62-21.58) mg/kg. The result showed that, total hydrocarbon and total petroleum hydrocarbon levels observed at the truck park,have provided evidence of severe petroleum hydrocarbon contamination of the Alesa trailer park sites and this has led to an increase in the levels of heavy metals in the truck soil. The study recommends that more studies be done at trailer parks and that, the trailer parks should be located far from homes and farms. These conditions of soil contamination generally imply low soil fertility, which in turn implies low agricultural productivity and reduced sources of livelihood in the affected areas.  Bioremediation in truck parks should be encouraged in line with international best practices. Loaded trucks and other unguided human activities should be disallowed in truck parks.