Fire Pump Solutions: 6 Key Factors For Mine Sites

Designing the ideal fire pump solution for mine sites is paramount to ensure swift containment and avoid potentially devastating consequences. Reliability and dependability cannot be compromised.

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Global Pumps are people with a passion to make customers lives easier by understanding their needs and solving tough challenges. Over the last 47 years we have built up a portfolio of world-class pumps with a track record of fast and efficient service and dependable after sales support.

We have asked our engineers to highlight common questions that mine site operators ask as we guide them through the fire pump set selection process, from concept and design to installation and commissioning.

Where should I put the equipment, and what kind of building do I need for it? 

During site assessment, define the environmental conditions where the equipment will be located. Determine if there’s a designated building for the equipment. Consider options for a custom-built pump enclosure, containerised pump room, or even just an overhead roof to extend your equipment life and simplify maintenance. Keep in mind that the IP rating for local control panels varies between indoor and outdoor locations. Are there seismic considerations? Seismic mountings & engineering are common practices for our fire pump skids.

How much water does my site need, and how strong does it need to flow?

Assess your water requirements by estimating the demand. Ensure accurate hydraulic calculations have been done to determine the pump’s requirements for maintaining flow and pressure, especially at the most disadvantaged hydrant. Learn how to calculate pump flow rate in our comprehensive guide. Is the pump selection compliant with Australian Standards? Under AS2941 the pump must be able to achieve 130% duty flow at 80% of duty head. There is also 50kPa derating for sprinkler systems. 

Where does the water come from, and is it enough and suitable for the pump?

Identify your water source and assess its adequacy. Check if the infrastructure can support the pump(s) at full flow and if there’s a reliable diesel supply for continuous operation over six hours. Evaluate if the supply water is quality compatible with the pump system. Additionally, consider potential corrosive water applications when assessing the need for ancillary piping and instruments in fire pump skids. 

Do I have specific rules for my site, and how do they compare to the usual ones?

Assess if your site has its own standards above & beyond Australian Standards. The Australian Standard for fixed fire pumps (AS2941) provides a comprehensive framework for fixed fire pumps across industries. It is highly likely that many aspects may not conform with more stringent mining specifications. Share your standards and requirements for mechanical and electrical equipment to ensure compliance and avoid non-conforming packages.

What do I need to do to keep the equipment working well, and how can I ensure it's always ready?

Ensure the equipment remains operational by conducting monthly run tests, as stipulated in AS1851 requirements. Consider the advantage of long-term spare parts availability & technical support from well-established brands to maintain the equipment's readiness and reliability.

How do I connect everything together, including getting power and communicating with other systems?

To ensure seamless integration, assess the system’s integration requirements. Determine the vendor’s battery limit and its implications for installation. Consider how the package will be delivered and assembled – will it be shipped as a complete unit or in multiple sub components? Bear in mind even a diesel system needs 240VAC power for battery charging. Assess communication requirements with existing infrastructure,  as fire pumps cannot be stopped without manual intervention and critical alarms should be monitored 24/7.

By systematically addressing these critical questions, you can operate with confidence knowing that your system has been designed correctly from the outset and your assets are protected.

Safeguard your critical assets with tailored fire protection. We engineer and build customised fire pump packages for mining, construction, healthcare, education, and government facilities. Ensure safety, security, and compliance. Contact us today.


Tags: Mining, Fire pumps


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