The Australian Mining Review - - NEWS - RAY CHAN

Aus­tralian com­pany Visy Load has launched a new load sens­ing washer that it says will be a game-chang­ing, money-sav­ing de­vice for mines, the con­struc­tion sec­tor and other in­dus­tries.

Man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Phil Hem­pen­stall said the Vi­sy­load washer lets peo­ple know, at a glance, the work­ing load limit on a rock bolt or threaded an­chor, and hence whether if it is safe to sus­pend a cer­tain load from a rock bolt or threaded an­chor.

He said load sens­ing wash­ers are not new but his firm has spent five years de­vel­op­ing a far more ef­fec­tive prod­uct, not seen be­fore in the mar­ket­place.

The Vi­sy­load washer has tabs that curl down when they de­ploy. This in­di­cates the ap­plied ten­sion or torque.

There are dif­fer­ent mod­els for dif­fer­ent weights: the three-tab washer is for 3t weights, the four-tab is for 6t and the five tab is for up to 8t. And Visy Load is de­vel­op­ing mod­els for other weight lim­its.

“The Vi­sy­load washer is a game changer for mines and tun­nels in par­tic­u­lar be­cause it re­moves the need for a spe­cial­ist geotech­ni­cian to as­sess the rock bolt or threaded an­chor, and the is­sue of staff down­time while they wait for that as­sess­ment,” Mr Hem­pen­stall said.

“When you con­sider how many rock bolts and threaded an­chors are in mines and tun­nels, Vi­sy­load equates to big sav­ings in time and money.

“In Aus­tralian un­der­ground mines it is manda­tory to as­sess each rock bolt.”

Mr Hem­pen­stall said over the past 18 months, Vi­sy­load has been suc­cess­fully tri­alled in mines in North­ern NSW and Queens­land.

He said there has been in­ter­est from the con­struc­tion in­dus­try and emer­gency ser­vice or­gan­i­sa­tions.

“The washer is cost ef­fec­tive and any com­pe­tent per­son can in­stall it and ver­ify the cor­rect bolt pull-out strength,” he said.

Vi­sy­load is man­u­fac­tured in Aus­tralia us­ing heat cer­ti­fied steel and other raw ma­te­ri­als un­der an ISO9001 ac­cred­ited qual­ity sys­tem.

‘We have had Vi­sy­load per­for­mance tested and ac­cred­ited in a NATA cer­ti­fied lab­o­ra­tory,” Mr Hem­pen­stall said.

He said as well as po­ten­tial sav­ings in time and money, Vi­sy­load brings risk man­age­ment and WHS ben­e­fits.

“Be­ing in­stantly cer­tain whether a rock bolt can safely sus­pend a load re­duces the risk of work­place in­juries in un­der­ground mines, tun­nels and other in­dus­tries that use rock bolts,” he said.

A rock bolt is a long an­chor bolt, used for sta­bil­is­ing rock ex­ca­va­tions in tun­nels or rock cuts and in un­der­ground mines. They trans­fer load from the un­sta­ble ex­te­rior to the con­fined (and much stronger) in­te­rior of the rock mass.

Emer­gency ser­vices use rock bolts in rock faces when res­cu­ing peo­ple.

Phil Hem­pen­stall and the new washer.

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