[ID] => 9318
[post_author] => 288
[post_date] => 2018-03-09 08:15:33
[post_date_gmt] => 2018-03-09 08:15:33
[post_content] => With many different types of lift trucks essential to transport flammable ingredients, pharmaceutical companies usually specify explosion-protected units that comply with ATEX 2014/34/EU, says sector specialist Pyroban. However, while EU standard EN 1755 helps to achieve ATEX 2014/34/EU compliance, the standard has now changed, with EN 1755:2015 coming into force this past November and superseding EN 1755:2000.
"The changes to EN 1755 affect pallet, stacker or reach trucks, VNA and any counterbalance trucks used in storage or production areas inside," says Pyroban's UK and Ireland sales manager Rob Vesty. "Outdoor activities are also affected, for example, in bulk storage areas where there are tanks of solvents, or waste storage areas. Waste management companies are also affected, as well as suppliers to the pharmaceutical industry."
While most of the trucks affected by this change will be used in Zone 1 or Zone 2 areas, many are also needed in Zone 21 or 22 areas where powder is the hazard. "Static build-up and friction can create enough energy to cause ignition, so one of the key changes to EN 1755 was that static is now considered a 'normal' occurrence in Zone 2 hazardous areas," he notes. "This affects the technical design of the truck and elements like tyres, seats, arm rests, cabin sides and hydraulic systems and more."
While Pyroban's ATEX conversions can help address the technical requirements of the updated EN 1755:2015 standard, pharmaceutical firms need to be aware of how this change may now affect their fleet on a day-to-day basis and in terms of maintenance and parts supply. "Pharmaceutical sites could face downtime if explosion-protected parts supply is not considered early enough by procurement teams or the lift truck dealer, as lead times can be longer," Vesty warns. "Many of these businesses have large fleets over numerous sites, so it could make a big difference to the operation."
NOT JUST STATIC
As well as static, there are also many other ways by which a standard forklift could be an ignition source in a pharmaceutical setting. For example, this could be from a spark emitted by an item of unprotected electrical equipment or simply the heat given off by motors, brakes and/or other components. Importantly, EN 1755:2015, Pyroban states, "now requires changes to any device or controller carrying out a safety function, which includes gas detection systems".
To this end, Pyroban's system6000™ includes the use of gas detection, restricted breathing enclosures, stainless steel cladding for forks and surface temperature cooling to ensure that motors, brakes, electrics and other components remain below the auto-ignition temperature of the flammable materials in question, with pharma firms typically requiring T4 temperature class systems that have a temperature limitation of 135˚C. "system6000 is a popular solution for Zone 2 applications, particularly where cleanliness is important," Vesty says. "It is a clean, simple conversion with very little added on to the exterior of the truck to compromise hygiene and it's simple to use."
"Even in hazardous zones, pharmaceutical production lines must have high uptime. If a truck can't perform a particular action, it can render a whole batch of product useless. This makes a proper service and maintenance regime vital," he continues. "Safety and quality are top priorities in the pharmaceutical industry. Being aware of the recent changes to EN1755 will help companies with potentially explosive atmospheres ensure that their people, and their brands, are protected."
[post_title] => EX: Pharma forks
[post_status] => publish
[comment_status] => open
[ping_status] => open
[post_name] => ex-pharma-forks
[post_modified] => 2018-03-09 08:16:13
[post_modified_gmt] => 2018-03-09 08:16:13
[post_parent] => 0
[guid] => https://www.hcblive.com/?p=9318
[menu_order] => 0
[post_type] => post
[comment_count] => 0
[filter] => raw