Earlier this year we fitted a walkway using our GRP Grating for Tarmac Marine, which was a first for us, given the conditions the walkways would be used in, being used on a Tarmac vessel.
Tarmac Marine contacted us looking for a different solution to their ongoing walkway problems.
They were constantly finding problems with their metal grid walkways:
- The metal surfaces always get warped in use: The distortion means all day long the crew would hear ‘bang-bang-bang’ on every footstep as people go marching backward and forward in big boots.
- There’s a safety issue: The galvanised steel walkways always corrode. The dredger’s action loads the atmosphere with a high concentration of salt and moisture, which obviously doesn’t work well with metal. If something like a rusting walkway isn’t dealt with promptly, there is a risk of tripping from a distorted grid or falling from a corroded one.
- Time: With repairs being needed for the walkways on a regular basis because of corrosion and distortion, this was an issue as working schedules can be tight without much room for interruption.
It was very clear straight away that the solution was GRP grating. We recommended this for the following reasons:
- Non-slip “It’s a fibreglass base in an Isophthalic resin, with an aluminium oxide grit on top, bonded into the surface, which results in a resilient structure with superb underfoot traction, so gives a great non-slip solution, even if you have an oily surface repeatedly drenched by seawater.
- Lightweight: It’s very light in comparison to steel, so when installing on a vessel the composite’s lightweight makes it easy to handle. However, there’s no compromise on strength, as a 38mm grating will take a point loading of half a tonne, so you don’t need crosswise strengthening beams, it is stiff enough to span the gap between one side of a gangway and the other.
- Cut & ready to fit: Unlike with metal, there’s no hot work like welding or even sawing, installation is fast and simple. We supply ‘standard’ panel sizes, but will also cut to size, even those awkward shapes like T-sections and triangles. We even number and label all pieces so there’s no confusion, you can just slot them in and clamp the sections into position with clips.
- It’s not noisy metal: With the composite, there won’t be the constant clanging of people’s boots as they walk along. It’s also non-magnetic, non-conductive and won’t spark like metal if you drop your tools onto it.
- It looks good: We offer the composite walkways in different colours such as emerald green and a safety yellow that’s useful for high-vis, public areas such as ferries. However, the light grey colour, similar to metal, is by far the most popular – but there’s no rust!
When we receive an enquiry regarding the use of GRP Grating all aspects of its intended use are always considered:
- What the load bearing is
- The environment
- Potential impact
- Possible spillage contamination
- Maintenance regime
- Fire integrity
- …and even colour
Tarmac Marine realised that GRP Grating was the long-term solution in the salty sea and air environments they work in.
The best way is the GRP way.
You can see what other anti-slip solutions we recommend for marine industries here, but do give us call on 023 8040 6796 if you want to find out more.