Plant & Equipment

Ensuring fire protection for heavy quarry vehicles

Quarry sites see a vast number of heavy vehicles, plant and equipment operated daily, loading and unloading goods and transporting materials. These vehicles have ignition/heat sources like energised wiring and turbochargers and with the potential for on-board goods to add to the fuel load, a fire risk in an operation can be high.

It is therefore essential that vehicles are fitted with a suitable fire suppression solution. 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 that are designed to provide vital risk management for heavy vehicles. The systems are developed to suppress fires in key risk areas such as the engine and transmission compartments, brakes and hydraulic areas of of heavy vehicles, plant and equipment.

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

Wormald?s formalised fire risk assessment process, in accordance with Australian Standard AS 5062-2006 ? Fire Protection for Mobile and 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 VFS system features high pressure and small droplet nozzles which target risk areas such as the turbo charger 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 VFS and the 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 must 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 quarrying industry including Fire Extinguisher Training, Confined Space Entry Training, Breathing Apparatus (BA) Training, Lay Flat Hose Training and First Aid Training.

Source: Wormald Australia/Write Away Communication + Events

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