Road Barriers Suppliers for Mines: Products to Improve Safety
Large vehicles operate at mine sites. Whether these vehicles operate above or underground, it is difficult for drivers to see small barriers. It is for this reason road barriers suppliers like Armco Superlite provide bright yellow plastic barricades that are larger than the ones used for small vehicle traffic.
A closer look at the types of vehicles that operate at mines, the importance of mine safety, and the need for brightly coloured and portable road barricades is given below. The article also discusses the importance of choosing road barriers suppliers that are familiar with the barrier needs of construction companies, road maintenance firms, and mines in South Africa.
Importance of Mine Safety in South Africa
The Minerals Council of South Africa released a statement in 2020 in which they expressed their concern with the high accident figures at South African mines. The Council is the primary safety body for the industry. Accordingly, there were 51 deaths due to mining accidents in 2019 (a record low) with the figure much higher in 2021. Serious thought must be given to equipment and policies to enhance the safety of the work conditions.
Every fatality affects the morale of workers. It also affects the income of the families left behind. In addition, work must stop for investigations, causing financial loss for the mining houses. Each step taken to improve the safety at mines is a step closer to full compliance with occupational health and safety standards and international industry standards.
Although vehicle-related accidents only account for a specific portion of the incidents at the mines, putting road barricades in place, where relevant, can help to lower the incident rates.
How the Road Barriers Suppliers Help
Through the supply of quality, durable, and highly visible temporary barricades, the suppliers do their part to help put equipment in place for improving safety at mines and construction sites in South Africa.
The temporary brightly coloured road barricades are also visible at night. The barricades are high enough to be seen by drivers of high clearance vehicles. This enables the drivers to identify areas where they cannot drive and where workers are busy with tasks. With these in place, workers and expensive equipment are protected. Although the barricades are not meant to stop heavy vehicles, these devices are effective for demarcating areas where work can take place and to create lanes for driving.
With clearly marked lanes for driving, the drivers are also protected against accidental driving down slopes or into ditches. It is difficult for the drivers to see exactly where dirt or gravel road edges are located without barricades.
The barricades also serve to show workers where not to move or enter. A worker can easily fall down a mine shaft that’s unprotected, or down a manhole. The barricades can be placed around such areas to indicate the danger and prevent accidental movement into the hazardous space.
Burst pipes, sinkholes, open utility lines, and more are all hazards for both vehicles and pedestrians at mine sites. To minimise the risk of accidents, it is essential to install temporary road barricades at or around the hazards. To this end, suppliers ensure their products are highly visible for easier detection, also in low-light conditions.
Characteristics of the Barriers Suppliers Offer in South Africa
Although the exact dimensions and colours can differ, depending on the particular suppliers, the temporary barriers are all made for portability when empty. As trusted suppliers of temporary and permanent road safety products in South Africa, Armco Superlite supplies the monster-sized barriers to mines, construction firms, and engineering companies.
The barriers available from Armco Superlite are called Monster Man Safety Barriers. These barricades are made from high-impact, UV-stabilised polyethylene. Workers can flush mount the barricades that come in yellow or black.
Each of the barriers has a 2-metre base, is 2,06 metres high, and 3 metres in length. When empty, a barrier weighs 120 kg, making it possible for two workers to move a unit from one location to another.
The Monster Man units can also be moved through the use of equipment. When filled with water, one such barricade weighs 2000 kg (can take 2000 litres of water), which is enough to prevent accidental movement. These will also not be blown over by wind from the passing vehicles.
What is UV Stabilised Plastic?
Plastic products that have not been UV stabilised, fade and crack over time when exposed to harsh sunlight. Road safety products made from plastic materials must be UV stabilised as the products are used outdoors. The products must be durable enough to last for at least a couple of years. With such in mind, suppliers ensure that the products they supply are protected against UV ray damage. Stabilisation means either a protective film has been applied or protective materials have been integrated in the making of the plastic.
What is Polyethylene Plastic?
It is a polymer and ethylene combination and the most used plastic today. Different types are manufactured and used across the world. It has superb impact strength, which is also why it is used in the making of barriers that might have to resist impact from vehicles.
Why Fill the Barriers?
Although heavy enough not to be moved by light winds or casual bumping from a light vehicle, these can fall over in heavy windy conditions. Therefore, filling them with 2000 litres of water makes them sturdy to protect against roll-over or easy movement.
Why is Water Better than Sand or Another Fill Substance?
It is quicker and requires less effort to fill the barricades with water and drain the units than when using sand or another type of substance. Hose pipes can be used to reach the barricades from water trucks or other water sources. The drained water can be used again as well.
How is the Water Drained?
Drain holes allow for quick and easy draining of the water.
Why Not Use Concrete Barricades?
Concrete is heavy, which means specialised equipment must be used to move the barricades. Due to its weight, concrete is not suitable for temporary applications. It might be necessary to move the barricades often on mining sites, which make lighter plastic-based road barriers better suited for the purpose.
Smaller Temporary Barriers for Other Areas at Mine Sites
Apart from the monster-sized barricades, suppliers like Armco Superlite also manufacture a range of standard-sized plastic barriers. These are suitable for demarcating work areas and drive lanes for smaller vehicles, and around hazards where large vehicles don’t operate. These feature interlocking connections to create long sections where necessary. The interlocking also creates a stronger barrier than when not interconnected.
The barricades are also made from UV-stabilised polyethylene plastic for maximum durability, fade resistance, and protection against harsh sunlight. The units are also fitted with drain holes and, similar to the monster-sized ones, can be filled with water for more stability. These are not intended as crash barricades, but to demarcate areas and close off hazards.
Other Types of Temporary Road Safety Products Suitable for Use at Mines
Road safety product suppliers also offer road safety cones, known as pylons. These have hollow designs, making it easier to stack them to save on storage space, and also make them easier to transport and to set up on location.
These cones are brightly coloured and can be fitted with reflective sleeves to make them more visible in low light and dark conditions. The cones are used to create temporary lanes around work areas, incident scenes, and hazards. The extra-large types are well-suited for mine sites where large vehicles operate.
Different types are available to suit the particular types of applications. The heavy base cones are stable, even in windy conditions and are made from durable plastic. Special UV protection is applied for added durability, making them suitable for outdoor use.
Final Thoughts on Road Barriers Suppliers for Mines
Improving mine safety in South Africa is a necessity, and it is essential to buy appropriate products like the monster-sized barriers and cones from suppliers that understand the working conditions at mines.
Armco Superlite has been one of the trusted suppliers of such products to mines, construction companies and road maintenance firms for many years. View the full range of products to get an idea of the quality and types on offer. Connect with Armco Superlite for more information on the many barriers available in South Africa.