Who Washes the Washers? How to Keep Quarry Washing Equipment Safe

Quarry pits and mines have no shortage of hazards. It’s part of the job, after all, which is why miners and quarry workers literally put their lives on the line every time they show up for work. Of course, there are many ways for both workers and companies to significantly reduce the risk of injury and death by practicing some basic washing practices.

Just like the human body, quarry equipment needs to be washed regularly to avoid them getting bogged down by industrial gunk, rocks, soil, and other things that could clog them up and make them hazardous to use. Here are some washing practices you should apply to some basic quarry washing equipment:

Washing Equipment You Should Check Regularly

To be clear, everything used in a quarry should be checked and maintained regularly, from a hand-held trowel to a full-sized earthmover. This becomes doubly true for washing equipment because of its constant use of water (which is excellent for washing away dirt, but bad for metal) and the number of moving parts they have.

Dewatering Pumps

Dewatering pumps are at the heart of a quarry’s wet process and is the equipment responsible for ensuring that wastewater goes where it should be. Typically, high-quality dewatering pumps need very little preventive maintenance other than making you unclog it from time to time.

However, improper installation or unauthorized modifications might result in damage inside the pump or make it function in ways it’s not supposed to (e.g., pumping out volumes of water that’s more than its manufactured capacity). Whenever you install or modify a dewatering pump, always consult the manufacturer and do not proceed until they’ve given both their green light and the right materials.

Other than that, make sure that a pump’s impellers are in functioning order, as any detriment to this part can reduce the overall efficiency of the pump.

Trommels and Scrubbers

Coal mine workers in an open pit

Quarry trommels, also known as a Trommel Screen, are major pieces of equipment that wash and classify quarried materials. Because it has large moving parts, proper lubrication (as well as appropirate mounting alignments) are critical in preventing any kind of damage to the machine itself.

Always inspect a trommel’s screen and scrubbers for any undue wear and tear, as well as checking the internal liners and lifters for any damage. Make sure that the paddles are set at the right height. Paddles set below a certain point won’t make the material rotate and interact effectively, while setting them too high will prevent enough material from going in.

Replace the paddles and scrubbers as soon as they show a moderate amount of wear and tear. It’s tempting to keep them until they’re rendered completely worn down, but this might result in unclean materials being processed. The paddles and the scrubbers are there to make sure that the materials interact with each other effectively and that they’re free of as many impurities as possible.

Quarry safety is more than just having the right equipment, it’s also about having the proper maintenance practices that keep your machines working properly, and thus, preventing your workers from injury.

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