Increasing reports of Pollution of soils of high traffic areas and abattoirs all over the world with heavy metals have become worrisome. This study assessed the heavy metal contamination of soils of selected urban high traffic areas (HTAs) and abattoirs in Benin metropolis. A total of 168 soil samples were collected along high traffic density areas and abattoirs with 84 samples each from sample locations a period of 6 months. Concentrations of heavy metals were determined using atomic absorption spectroscopy (Bulk Scientific 210 VGP). The mean concentrations of heavy metals in HTAs were 1444.34±154.21 (Fe), 29.67±2.39 (Zn), 14.47±0.73 (Cu), 29.65±3.48 (Mn), 6.21±0.89 (Pb) and 1.35±0.17 (Cd), respectively. The mean concentrations of heavy metals in abattoirs were 1409.81±48.04 (Fe), 34.91±9.75 (Zn), 12.47±3.60 (Cu), 29.85±4.71 (Mn), 5.94±0.74 (Pb) and 1.62±0.46 for Cd, respectively. Metal concentrations in the soils of HTAs and abattoirs followed the following order: Fe>Zn>Mn>Cu>Pb>Cd. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) for HTAs and abattoirs showed 82.298% and 81.465% of the total variance in the data set of HTAs and abattoir, respectively. Geo-accumulation index (Igeo) value showed that the soils were practically unpolluted for Cu and Mn, moderately polluted with Fe, Zn, heavily and extremely polluted with Pb and Cd. A regular monitoring and assessment to ensure sustainable management of the urban environment and reduction of traffic related contamination and routine abattoir activities that contaminate the soil, plants and water should be vigorously pursued.
Keywords: Monitoring, Metal, Contamination, Abattoir, Traffic Areas, Benin Metropolis