Businesses have been required to act swiftly and decisively to protect staff and contain cashflow and this has produced opportunities for some businesses, but most have had to operate differently just to survive.
In some instances, management and employees provided a cursory clean-up of their premises, turned off machinery, gathered their personal belongings and just walked out the door locking it behind them.
For many businesses your Machinery is your lifeblood, and to prepare for and eventually undertake your business recovery (once declared possible by the Government), the following risk mitigation strategies have been prepared to assist in ensuring a safe shut down and a safer start up.
- Contact various original equipment manufacturers (OEM) for recommended shutdown procedures and guidance on preparing equipment for long term idle periods.
- Remove all process materials from process vessels, tanks, pumps and pipework.
- Fasten covers over all building air condition/ventilation vent openings to prevent entry by insects, rodents, birds and other animals.
- Corrosion protection:
- separate dissimilar metals to prevent possible galvanic corrosion
- consult the OEM for advice on the optimal method of corrosion protection systems for the metal parts of a machine (liquid protective waxes, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) spray coatings, vapour space inhibitors (VCI’s), water absorbing desiccants, oxygen scavengers, protective plastic films etc.)
- boilers – the wet side of the boiler should be left full of feed-treated water (consult your water treatment company for advice on optimal chemical composition of the treated water). The fire side should be provided with heated dry air and include a desiccant package (for moisture absorption).
- Large petrol and diesel powered engines:
- drain fuel
- add rust inhibitor to lube and seal oil
- add rust inhibitor to coolant (consult the OEM for advice on appropriate rust inhibitors).
- Electrical plant:
- lift carbon brushes from commutators/slip rings in large motors and generators
- leave oil filled transformers energised.
- Maintain clean and dry conditions for sensitive electrical control equipment (PLCs, VSDs electronic field devices etc.) including associated spare parts (control cards etc.). Use desiccant packages and seal electrical enclosures.
- Compose a plant deactivation list and clearly mark equipment to indicate to operators involved with the future plant restart of what has been done to preserve the equipment (not documenting what has been done to equipment during the shutdown process can lead to situations being overlooked and ultimately damage equipment).
- Experienced maintenance personnel should inspect the plant at least a minimum of monthly:
- rotate large rotating equipment 90 degrees to prevent bearing brinelling (consult the OEM for advice)
- replace desiccants as needed
- check protective coatings applied to metal surfaces and reapply as needed
- conduct refrigerant leak testing on large
- refrigeration plant
- check for rodent damage to electrical systems. Powered / energised plant and equipment should only be worked upon by competent persons following safe working procedures
We hope that this helps, and thank you to Vero Insurance for compiling this list. If you have further engineering insurance queries please contact Austbrokers Countywide on 03 9835 1300
Toll free: 1800 245 123
P: (03) 9835 1300
F: (03) 9763 5932
Level 2, 35 Dalmore Drive
Scoresby VIC 3179