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Pump engineers are constantly learning and renewing their training and skills. Two of our engineers have recently renewed their Confined Space Training. The nature of the job, means dealing not only with water but also sewage and involves engineers entering, working in, and exiting confined spaces. A confined space is defined as a space with any of these three characteristics: (a) limited or restricted openings for entry or exit; (b) poor natural ventilation; and (c) unsuitability for continuous worker occupancy.

By this broad definition, spaces like manholes, tanks, pipelines, and underground vaults qualify as confined spaces. Other characteristics can include :-

• The presence (or potential presence) of a hazardous atmosphere and/or material that can engulf a worker;
• The potential to trap or asphyxiate a worker by virtue of inwardly converging walls or downward-sloping floors that taper into smaller areas; and
• The presence (or potential presence) of exposed live wires, heat stress, unguarded machinery, and other recognized safety and/or health hazards.

Some of the hazards associated with work in permit spaces include, but are not limited to, the following:
• Loss of consciousness due to asphyxiation resulting from lack of oxygen and/or the presence of noxious fumes and vapors;
• Loss of consciousness due to exposure to temperature extremes;
• Fire or explosion;
• Electric shock;
• Exposure to excessive noise;
• Slips and falls on slick or wet surfaces;
• Suffocation or asphyxiation due to engulfment or entrapment;
• Drowning (in confined spaces vulnerable to water intrusion);
• Falling objects (in confined spaces with topside openings);
• and more.

The above abviously outlines the more dangerous nature of the job, so when you next have contact with a pump engineer bear in mind that although your job may not include this aspect of their training many of our projects do.


Pumpseal is looking forward to a new financial year with some rebranding and a new website. Now that we have seen the first 'green shoots' of growth in the economy we have started to see some increase in demand for the design and supply of new pumping stations or an upgrade to existing installations. Now that the weather has a last abated and the ground water is slowly ebbing away is the ideal time to consider maintenance and repairs. Even better establish a service contract to elongate the life of your station, to pre-empt some of the problems and manage your budgets with a set payment plan.

Emergency call outs can have significant costs both in time and financially. Some of the most common causes are failures of mechanical seals and bearings and it can often be a false economy to select a cheap pump. More expensive pumps are generally built for better longevity and last longer between repairs.

Another very basic tip from our engineers for those with pumps that deal with sewage, to minimise the cost of repairs and maintenance is to ensure that at all times the dreaded wipes, pads and even dental floss are not flushed into the system. Those innocuous little pads always cause the worst blockages and for those of us with a delicate constitution the resulting situtation can be truly unpleasant and cause some horrendous back ups in the system!!

Finishing on a more pleasant note - enjoy the sunshine and the start of spring.

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