Chemical manufacturer LANXESS Urethanes UK Ltd. has received a new generation of Pyroban® protected lift trucks for its operation in Baxenden, UK. The company handles large volumes of flammable material and relies on active explosion protection to alert the drivers if flammable material is present.
“We predominantly manufacture urethane and acrylic products for use in coatings, adhesives, sealants and foams at this site in Baxenden,” says Paul Stansfield, Logistics Manager at LANXESS Urethanes UK Ltd. “These are specialty chemicals that are used primarily in the construction, automotive and textile industry.”
In Baxenden, LANXESS operates as a COMAH site as many of the raw materials and finished products are flammable or hazardous. With numerous hazardous areas, the company specifies ATEX compliant products and follows strict safety procedures. As a global speciality chemical company safety is key for LANXESS and the Group sustains the same high safety standards on a global level.
LANXESS recently renewed four of its 2.5 tonne capacity lift trucks. Two are used by production operators to deliver flammable raw materials in drums or IBCs to the reactors 24 hours per day, while the other two unload and load articulated lorries, as well as containers for export to China, America and elsewhere.
The Toyota Tonero lift trucks feature Pyroban’s system6000™ which incorporates gas detection to continuously monitor the direct environment around each truck.
“When a mixture of flammable gas or vapour in air is detected, system6000 gives an audible and visual warning to the driver at 10% Lower Explosive Limit (LEL) propane in air,” explains Rob Vesty, Sales Manager UK and Ireland for Pyroban. “At 25% LEL it shuts down the protected equipment, automatically eliminating the risk of an explosion.”
The Pyroban safety system also includes restricted breathing enclosures, shut-off valve, stainless steel cladding for forks and surface temperature cooling to ensure the engine, motors, brakes, electrics and other components remain below the auto-ignition temperature of the flammable materials.
“Pyroban has been supporting this site for many years and previously helped LANXESS transition to using trucks for Zone 2, bringing active gas detection to the operation to alert drivers in the event of a spillage or accidental release,” says Rob.
Paul Stansfield continues “We used to have trucks built for Zone 1 operations using a more expensive, passive system but this was less effective for our Zone 2 needs.”
LANXESS conducted a trial of various machines and involved all drivers in the decision-making process to check for comfort and performance. Global Materials Handling was chosen after providing the best overall product solutions and service package for LANXESS.
Kieron Belshaw, Sales Manager from Haydock-based truck supplier Global Materials Handling Limited explains, “LANXESS wanted trucks with hydrostatic technology so that the operators did not need to brake to slow down – they just need to take their foot off the accelerator. This is an important factor to help prevent damage and improve safety.”
“We have had such excellent service support from Pyroban over decades ensuring maximum availability of the trucks,” says Paul, who has been on the site for over 28 years. In 2017, LANXESS celebrated 100 years of manufacturing on the site in Baxenden.
To ensure ongoing compliance and safety, Global Materials Handling Limited ensures its engineers are fully trained by Pyroban and aware of the recent updates to the standard EN1755 and ATEX. They use recommended service schedules and approved parts and have annual safety audits (Ex-ASA) scheduled with Pyroban engineers.
“The support from Pyroban and Global is so important to make sure that we have ongoing safety as well as truck availability to keep the reactors going and not lose any valuable production time,” Paul adds.
LANXESS is a leading specialty chemicals company with more than 19,000 employees at 74 production sites in 25 countries. It’s core business is the development, manufacturing and marketing of chemical intermediates, additives, speciality chemicals and plastics.