How to Keep Your Industrial Tank Cleaning on Schedule
Plant Managers are responsible for a variety of tasks that keep the plant running smoothly. One of these important tasks is managing industrial tank cleaning. In the past, industrial tank cleaning required several days of work, and moving crews from their regular positions forcing plant production to slow.
Now, there are different ways to schedule tank cleaning so you can keep your plant functioning efficiently and your budget maximized.
Scheduling tank cleaning might sound like an easy thing to do. But, it involves so much more than just penciling in a date. You have to organize cleaning crews and have the necessary supplies on hand. You also have to worry about safety issues, chemicals, and OSHA regulations.
Let’s go over a few ways you can keep your tank cleaning on schedule amid all of your other important tasks.
Case Study: See how much this chemical plant saved by going with robotic tank cleaning. View
Potential Hazards That Can Arise
Industrial tanks are considered confined spaces. They have small openings and supervisors are unable to see what is happening inside of the tanks. When human crews are inside, they are exposed to toxic chemicals and have limited oxygen.
Employees must wear safety gear, as many of the chemicals inside of industrial tanks have been linked to cancer and death.
Industrial tanks can be filled with harmful gasses, too. Because the tanks are designed to hold chemicals, they are not built to vent gasses in a way that protects humans.
Cleaning crews inside the tanks can be exposed to toxic or flammable gasses. As well as dealing with oxygen deficiency when cleaning out sludge or other liquids are at the bottom of the tank.
As a Plant Manager, you also have to worry about fall risks for your cleaning crews when working inside the tanks. The slippery surfaces and objects on the floor of the tanks can be hazardous to cleaning crews.
Falls can result in injuries like broken bones and concussions or could damage safety gear that can result in exposing crews to harmful chemicals.
Don’t forget to take into consideration the microbial hazards in industrial tanks. Often, the most dangerous toxins are the things we cannot see. With all of the hazards inside of industrial tanks, it is vital that cleaning crews and supervisors strictly abide by and when possible, go above and beyond, all OSHA regulations.
How to Keep Tank Cleaning on Schedule
Plant Managers need to organize their cleaning schedules in advance. With proper
planning, potential problems become less of an issue. It is vital that you plan for problems, as they are bound to occur.
To plan ahead, review all necessary OSHA regulations. Then, be sure to have all the required safety gear and cleaning supplies on hand. You should also look back at historical data to get an itemized list of expenses, hours spent on the task, and problems that occurred.
Hopefully, you keep thorough notes. Since tank cleaning happens infrequently, keeping notes will help you plan better for future sessions and know how you can improve.
When you schedule the task, don’t forget to understand the chemicals needed and the risks they involve. You should have solutions in place if accidents happen. Have eyewash stations ready to go and decontamination stations ready, too.
Be Aware and Control Costs
Cleaning industrial tanks can be costly. If you have to shut down production to clean the tanks, you want to complete the process as quickly as possible. Employees have to be paid. Chemicals need to be ordered, and other areas of the plant have to keep moving.
If problems arise, cost overruns are inevitable. If accidents happen, employees on the cleaning crew might have health issues that add to the cost of maintaining the tanks.
When you build your budget for tank cleaning, look at previous years to compare against expended progress. Pay attention to the hiccups, so you can avoid them before you begin cleaning the tanks.
If you have team members helping with the planning and cost analysis, get them involved as soon as possible. The more knowledge you have about the procedure, the better prepared you will be to stay within your budget and timeframe.
Take Humans Out of the Process as Much as Possible
When you use a human cleaning crew to maintain a toxic industrial tank, you run the risk of human errors and safety concerns. Accidents extend the timeline; but most importantly, accidents can seriously injure your loyal employees.
There is a solution that completely takes humans out of the tanks and keeps them on their regular jobs.
The safest way to clean your industrial tanks is to use tank-cleaning robots. While the robots are programmed by humans, no humans have to enter the tanks as the tank cleaning robots do the dangerous work inside of the tanks and are controlled remotely.
Ecobots can run continuously, so they do not need to work eight-hour shifts with scheduled breaks. They do not need to wear safety gear or worry about accidents that can damage their gear. Ecobots clean the tanks, that’s all.
Ecobots can quickly and efficiently clean industrial tanks. With human crews, Plant Managers often have to schedule over 100 days to clean their tanks. Ecobots can do the same work 3-5 times 475% faster than humans.
It’s hard to argue against numbers like that.
Along with performing the task at a significantly faster speed, these systems do the job with less impact on the environment. They use less water and fewer chemicals to clean the tank.
Making the Choice to Save Money and Ensure Safety
Cleaning industrial tanks is a job that no human should ever do again. The task is full of potential dangers. With robotics, Plant Managers can reduce the costs of cleaning the tanks.
And, using ecobots removes the chances of valuable employees suffering debilitating injuries or developing deadly diseases. Ease your stress and help keep your project on budget with these helpful tips, and consider using robots for your next tank cleaning project.