In January of 2015, Caddy Storage installed their very own automated powder coating line – a fantastic asset for their operations as one of Australia’s largest manufacturers and suppliers of commercial vehicle storage systems and accessories.
But as useful as the powder coating line was, it also created problems. The new oven at the centre of the line had two open-ended sides. With all that heat escaping, there was a strong increase in temperature – creating an uncomfortable work environment for staff and setting off fire alarms during summer.
This was seriously costing the business, Chief Warden Chris Brennan explains.
“You basically get a freebie the first time a fire alarm goes off if it’s an accident and then, if there’s a subsequent false alarm within 60 days, you suffer the penalties. And it costs about $1,250 to $1,500 every time the fire brigade comes out,” he said.
In addition to these costs, Caddy Storage suffered from the loss of productivity as a result of evacuation procedures.
“By the time the firemen turned up, and we’d done a walk around to establish that everything was okay, and got everybody back to work – we’d lost about half an hour’s work per person,” Chris added.
“And when you’ve got to evacuate 90 people out to the emergency area – that’s about forty-five hours of productive time lost. So we were losing a week’s wage every time the alarms went off,” he explained.
The Caddy Storage powder coating line in action
Edmonds installed four EP900 ventilation systems to help moderate the temperature and prevent the fire alarms from going off. Since then, things have drastically improved at Caddy Storage, and they love their new solution.
“It’s low noise – that was one of the most important things for us. It’s also definitely low cost…we currently run about five axial fans in our facilities and they’re big, noisy, old and power-consuming creatures. The new systems are low noise, and the running cost and maintenance of them is negligible,” he added.
Since installing Edmonds ventilation systems, the temperature has dropped about ten degrees throughout the summer, and the fire alarms have not sounded.
“It’s definitely more comfortable for workers. The main benefits have been that the fire alarms have stopped going off and we have a more comfortable environment for the guys,” Chris added.