‘Clamping’ down on safety: Vital Engineering’s Vitaclamps enhance safety in the power generation and other industrial sectors

When it comes to quality, reliability and safety, companies responsible for supplying the nation with power cannot afford to make mistakes. That is why Vital Engineering, a long-established manufacturer of gratings, stair treads, expanded metals, pressed floors and safety handrail, was selected  to supply 500 000 Vitaclamps as part of the largest gratings, handrail and stair tread supply contract in Africa.

The contract included the supply of 250 000 Vitaclamps to Medupi Power Station in the Limpopo Province and 250 000 to Kusile Power Station in Mpumalanga. As part of the project, Vital Engineering also supplied some 200 000 m2 of grating panels and 70 km of handrailing and 8 000 stair treads.

“After carefully assessing the quality and durability of our products, our superior fixing product was chosen because it suited the client’s particular requirements and application,” explains Glen Pringle, Technical Director of Vital Engineering. “Their decision shows that the market recognises our products as synonymous with high quality, performance and safety.”

Vitaclamps are a patented, top-fixing grating panel unit intended to save installation time and costs, by improving installation turnaround times, reducing scaffold hire and improving overall operational safety in the mining, petrochemical and other industries.

“Vitaclamps reduce costs while improving safety, by enabling a unit to be tightened from the top – unlike the traditional clip on the market which is fixed underneath,” explains Pringle.

As always, safety was a key aspect in both the Eskom power station projects. Vital Engineering worked proactively with the principal contractor, MHPSA (Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Africa) to meet and surpass specified quality and safety goals.

As a strong advocate in the industry of the importance of making an informed choice when it comes to safety products, Vital Engineering is wary of the number of sub-standard products that are ‘passed off’ as being equivalent to specified products by engineers or quantity surveyors. In comparison with other products on the market – including copies – Vitaclamps are:

  • Stronger: They can more securely and reliably fix grating panels/flooring to the steelwork for various applications.
  • Faster: They enable quicker fixing, easier maintenance and replacement of floor gratings.
  • Safer: In addition to the use of friction grip nuts for improved safety, they are more visible for safety checks and can even be colour-coded.
  • Easier to use: With better grip features and torque when tightening, they are simple and easy to fit.

The three Vitaclamp ranges — light, medium and heavy — are suitable for various applications and environments within mines, petrochemical plants and other on other industrial sites.

Vitaclamps are furthermore branded with the Vitagrid trademark — a sign of quality indicating a product is manufactured by an original equipment manufacturer (OEM).

“For example, when mining and petrochemical companies use products with this quality trademark, they protect themselves from risks associated with the use of poor quality copies available from other companies,” says Pringle.

He adds that Vitaclamps are an example of how the company continues to develop and produce innovative fixing solutions. With a proud history and track record of product innovation, Vital was the first square grating manufacturer on the market.

“We also manufactured the first ball-type handrail in both tubular and solid forged handrails; and m the first serrated gratings and expanded metal conveyor walkways to reduce slippage.

In addition, we have recently launched a distinctive channel clip, which clips onto the underside of the channel for faster installation,” he adds.

“We see a constant demand for our fixing products. In addition to utilising our products for their maintenance-related requirements, clients are even using them to secure opposition products in place. This is the result of the market’s growing preference for improved safety in industries ranging from power generation, mining, and petrochemicals to commercial, food and beverage, and materials handling sectors.”

In most if not all cases, Vitaclamps are sold with Vitagrid precision-made grating products and handrails.

“We do find that demand for these and many of our other patented gratings, stair treads, pressed floors and safety handrails products within South Africa – and from the international market – is growing, thanks to their innovative design and safety features. Vitaclamps are a really excellent example thereof, as their selection at some of our country’s leading power stations signifies,” Pringle concludes.