How Can GIW Assist Customers with On-Site Safety Concerns?
Accidents are some of the costliest workplace events, and preventing them is a priority for everyone at GIW. One recent example highlights this continued commitment to safety and even earned GIW recognition for going the extra mile.
Leaders at a Chilean copper mining operation contacted GIW about a problem they were having with their GIW MDX 750 pumps. The issue stemmed from mining site safety regulations. According to the regulations, all rotating equipment must have a protective safety guard. However, this customer needed to remove the guards when performing routine maintenance. Because they had to perform stuffing box maintenance while the pumps were running, they would be in violation of the regulations and endanger workers.
The customer asked GIW to design an adjustable shaft seal guard that would allow workers to properly maintain the stuffing boxes while the pumps were in operation. Always willing to go above and beyond for their customers, GIW Product Manager Jon Keith worked with Ben Hagler of Hagler Systems to design and build the requested guard.
“Without the guard, a worker could easily get a glove or finger caught and lose a finger, or a dropped wrench could eject like a missile and hit someone,” Keith said.
In addition, accident investigations require the pump train to be shut down. This can cost the mining operation upwards of $150,000 per hour. Maintaining safety and avoiding accident-related expenses were of major concern to the customer.
According to Keith, the project took two years from inception to install. Now complete, the adjustable shaft seal guard will ensure maintenance personnel safety by avoiding dangerous proximity to the shaft or any rotating components. This translates to safer maintenance and less downtime due to accidents.
“The maintenance supervisor was so impressed with the design he submitted it to the mine’s parent company as a candidate for a Safety Innovation Award,” Keith said.
As a result, GIW was awarded a plaque of recognition as the developer of the new Adjustable Shaft Seal Guard.
“It’s a very unique, maintenance-friendly design, and we plan to keep upgrading it to ensure the product stays competitive,” Keith said.
For Keith and the rest of the GIW team, the award is an honor and a privilege — but not a stopping point.
“This is just one example of GIW’s commitment to customer safety, product quality, and long-term support. We are constantly working to improve our family of wear-tested products with innovative ideas, product upgrades, testing facilities, and new material development,” Keith explained. “GIW takes pride in the fact that we are always listening to our customers’ concerns and are constantly striving to exceed their expectations.”