Protect heavy mining vehicles against fire

Protect heavy mining vehicles against fire from Wormald

By: Wormald  21-May-2012
Keywords: Fire Protection Equipment, Fire Protection, Fire & Safety

When operating heavy mining vehicles first-class safety systems and procedures are essential. Inadequate or improper fire protection in this highly specialised sector can, in the case of a fire, expose workers to extreme dangers, lead to potential loss of life, equipment and assets, and cause extensive downtime.

Mining sites see a vast number of heavy vehicles, plant and equipment being operated every day, loading and unloading goods and transporting materials. These heavy vehicles have significant ignition/heat sources such as energised wiring and turbochargers and with the potential for onboard goods to add to the fuel load, it’s clear that the risk of a fire while in operation can be high.
 
It is therefore essential that vehicles are fitted with a suitable fire suppression solution that is best suited to their fire risk. Furthermore, heavy vehicle operators must understand the risks involved in their role and how to ensure their safety should a fire break out in or on the vehicle they are operating.

Fire protection specialist Wormald offers a range of vehicle fire suppression (VFS) systems which are designed to provide vital risk management for heavy vehicles. The various systems are developed to suppress fires occurring in key risk areas such as the engine and transmission compartments, brakes and hydraulic areas of all kinds of heavy vehicles, plant and equipment.

The systems are designed to provide early detection and warning allowing extra time for the driver to safely evacuate, while also quickly suppressing the fire to help minimise damage to the vehicle.

Wormald’s formalised fire risk assessment process, in accordance with Australian Standard, AS 5062-2006: Fire Protection for Mobile & Transportable Equipment, assists in identifying and determining the level of fire risk in order to offer the most appropriate system for a particular vehicle in its operating environment.

Wormald’s Foam Water Spray Vehicle Fire Suppression (VFS) System and the Ansul™ A-101 Vehicle Powder System are both ActivFire listed to be compliant to AS 5062.

The Foam Water Spray VFS System features high pressure and small droplet nozzles which target risk areas such as the turbocharger and starter motor in the engine compartment. The system utilises the fire suppressing and containment features of Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF). In the event of a fire, a continuous stream of foam water spray is discharged to rapidly suppress flames and dramatically cool hot surfaces. At the same time, the generated foam acts to smother fuel and oil-spill fires, helping to prevent re-ignition.

The Ansul™ A-101 Vehicle Powder System, which discharges a dry powder known as Foray® into the risk area to suppress the fire, is well suited to three dimensional liquid fuel fires.

Both the Foam Water Spray VFS and the Ansul™ A-101 systems are installed with automatic detection and actuation systems, as well as cabin and ground level actuators. These allow the operator to manually activate the fire suppression system from either the cabin or at ground level if required.

Vehicle operators should also be fully trained on how to manually activate the vehicle fire suppression systems when necessary and how to use any fire protection equipment located in their vehicles, such as portable fire extinguishers.

Wormald is a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) and offers a range of fire safety training through practical theory, and hands-on learning experience. Wormald also offers a range of fire safety training programs suitable for the mining industry including Fire Extinguisher Training, Confined Space Entry Training, Breathing Apparatus (BA) Training, Lay Flat Hose Training and First Aid Training.

Keywords: Fire & Safety, Fire Protection, Fire Protection Equipment, Foam Systems, Sprinkler Systems, Vehicle Systems

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