Gauteng Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  16 Aug 2011

ENGINEERING: Safety & Quality - Vital to Petrochemical & Power Industries


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Vital Engineering, a major South African manufacturer of high quality fully serrated non-slip gratings, stair treads, pressed floors, expanded metals and safety handrails, has a solid track record of being suppliers to, amongst others, the petrochemical and power generation industries both locally and globally.

Dodds Pringle, Managing Director of Vital Engineering, says that the company’s expertise in meeting and exceeding clients’ requirements, from the design phase to shipping products anywhere in the world, has enabled Vital Engineering to enter the global market successfully and with confidence.

“We have a substantial footprint throughout southern Africa, but our products are also extensively used in a number of overseas organisations. Our ability to provide uncompromisingly high quality, backed by first rate customer service, has cemented our position as a major contender in the market.”

Within the industries serviced by Vital Engineering, is the necessity for products that enhance personal safety.

Stringent OHSAS compliance regulations are non-negotiable factors in industrial and mining installations and govern the modus operandi of these businesses. “We place great emphasis on designing for safety. This means that when the installation is for an industrial application, we design with 350WA steel. The use of this grade of steel affects the design and therefore the distance between the walkway beams. For example, these can be placed further apart than if lower grade or commercial steel were specified,” Pringle says.

Pringle explains that Vital Engineering has supplied its products to the boiler units, precipitators, external walkways and conveyor systems for the last three major power stations in South Africa. “We have also supplied our products to power plants such as Black Rock in Hong Kong, Yue Yang in mainland China, Iskenderun in Turkey and Paiton Power plant in Indonesia to name a few. In most cases, these contracts required upwards of some 2000 tons of our products.”

Pringle points out that the company has the capability and capacity to undertake various projects simultaneously. “Whilst we were busy with these projects we were also extensively involved in the supply to the petrochemical and oil industries for a number of trains on Sasol’s 1, 2 and 3 plants, Caltex in Cape Town and a number of projects in the Durban area, including the Fox project.

“In addition, we have been also been active in supplying to a variety of overseas projects, including the Middle East and Far East, and we are one of only a few South African companies that enjoy Saudi Aramco supplier status,” Pringle adds.

“The fact that we were one of the first few companies in South Africa to obtain and retain international ISO design-rated certification for 19 years, proves our consistency in supply chain management, quality, performance and client deliverables to all facets of these very demanding and safety conscientious industries,” says Pringle.

The company constantly updates its product offering to meet the ever-changing needs of industry. An example of this is the range of Vitaglass fibreglass non-slip (FRP or GRP) gratings, stair treads and handrail systems which have evolved over the past eight years to complement the metal ranges fabricated.

These innovations are finding increasingly wide acceptance in specific high-corrosion and high-maintenance areas, where clients seek lower maintenance cycle times and reduced long-term costs.

Pringle explains: “Smaller fibreglass mini-meshes allow filtration for plants as well as consumer traffic where a factor such as drainage is required without compromising end products or safety. In addition, these products are suited to environments where there is water or acid; in coal washing, for coastal and shipping applications and for external walkways.”

A variety of resins is also available including UV resistant and fire retardant mixes, which prolong the product life externally and reduce fire spread.

“Our products have also been successfully used in a variety of projects within the mining, petrochemical and power generation markets,” Pringle concludes.

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