New “ATEX” trucks provide protection for paints and coatings manufacturer

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A leading UK paints and coatings manufacturer has selected Pyroban® to provide explosion protection on its latest lift trucks operating in Zone 2 hazardous areas.

Aisle Master with Pyroban Explosion Protection

The manufacturer makes paints and specialist coatings at its Distribution Centre which operates round the clock, moving more than 1000 pallets and servicing more than 40 HGVs in 24 hours, making quick operation and reliability of equipment crucial.

As some of the products handled are solvent based, the Distribution Centre has been classified as a Zone 2 hazardous area which therefore requires specially adapted, ATEX 2014/34/EU compliant lift trucks.  Standard lift trucks operating in these areas could otherwise be a source of ignition in the event of a solvent vapour release.

“Heat from a truck’s engine, motors, brakes and other components, a spark from unprotected electrical equipment or a spark from static build up can all create enough energy to cause an explosion”, says Rob Vesty, UK Sales Manager for Pyroban.

To meet the customer’s handling needs, eight new electrically powered Aisle Master AM20WHE articulated forklifts, were supplied through Forkway Group and converted by explosion protection safety company Pyroban for Zone 2 (3G) operation.  The new trucks were each supplied with a fleet management system, hard wired colour camera system, amber operating beacon, white noise reverse alarm, LED work lights, speed limited, high visibility interlock seat belt, blue spot lights, red halo lights and battery water and charging systems.

The trucks feature Pyroban’s system6000™, an active detection system which incorporates gas detection to continuously monitor for the presence of a potentially explosive environment around each truck. In the event of a solvent vapour release, it will visually and audibly alert the driver and automatically shut the truck down where necessary, eliminating the risk of an explosion.  It helps ensure that the truck, and all its add-ons, are safe for use in the potentially explosive warehouse atmosphere.

The Pyroban conversions, with anti-static components to comply with EN1755:2015, also featured restricted breathing enclosures, stainless steel cladding of forks and surface temperature cooling to ensure the engine, motors, brakes, electrics and other components remain below the auto-ignition temperatures of flammable materials.

The manufacturer also introduced three Yale ERP16VF four-wheel electric lift trucks, one Yale M0103 order picker, a supporting low-level order picker the Yale M020 and a Hako Scrubmaster B310R ride-on scrubber drier to its fleet, all of which have been converted by Pyroban to the same high explosion-protection standards.

“We believe that safety should not be a compromise on quality so we ensure that every piece of equipment we convert can retain as much of its original specification and ergonomics as possible,” says Rob.  “This means that even challenging industry operations, such as those where paints and coatings are manufactured and stored, can use the truck brands they want and the products which fit their needs.”