FIRE CAUSES WAX BLOCKAGE
3 February 2017
330,000lbs of natural Wax, for the production of candles, cosmetics and medical products from a factory that, despite the effort of about 200 firemen, burned to the ground last November, melted and floated on firefighting water into streets and sewer system where it settled.
About 30 sewer and storm lines, ranging from 12” to 28”, manholes and lateral connections where blocked up to 100% with hardened Wax. Although the material was not extremely hard, it was too complicated for conventional jetting trucks to take care off and replacing the lines would simply take months. Precision jet cutting robots where used to precisely remove the settled Wax from pipelines and lateral connections.
Precision jet cutting is with only a handful systems Stateside a relatively new technique, but has proven itself for over a decade in Europe and uses high-pressure water to remove materials, such as fat, roots, scale, tuberculation, cement, calcium and concrete from inside pipelines. The operator controls a robotic crawler with camera and steerable nozzle and shoots high-pressure water directly at the material. 7,250psi @ 4GPM was used to break the Wax loose from pipe surfaces and into inches-thick chunks, which could than be flushed to the manhole and removed.
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