The floor of an industrial facility has to withstand many damaging factors such as chemicals, forklift truck movements, thermal shock and intense cleaning. Besides having to ensure the efficiency and safety of operations and employees, industrial flooring also has to be aesthetically pleasing so that the facility can be used as a showroom.

Iveco’s large plant in Pretoria is a prime example of an industrial flooring project that ticks all the boxes. In this plant, 55 000 square meters of specialist resin flooring was applied to create floors in the production, paint mixing and laboratory areas. It was imperative that the floors would support the site’s complex daily operations while retaining a visually appealing finish. To achieve this, a combination of the hardwearing epoxy system Flowcoat SF41 and the antimicrobial, antistatic Flowfresh MF ESD were used.

The Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) system is increasingly being used by developers and operators of contamination sensitive sites when specifying flooring that must be able to maintain a high performance finish despite the rigours of intense industrial conditions. While the HACCP food safety management system was originally intended for the food and beverage industry, it has become popular among many contamination sensitive markets (such as the healthcare, pharmaceutical and electronic sectors) thanks to its ability to inform the creation and maintenance of safe and clean facilities.

These guidelines emphasise the importance of seamless and impervious flooring, as well as adequate drainage and cleaning in order to facilitate the fast removal of excess liquid and contaminants. Traditional food and beverage flooring materials such as thermoplastic coverings, terrazzo, epoxy resins and polyurethane screeds all meet HACCP’s criteria thanks to the seamless, non-absorbent and easy-to-clean finish that they create. Demanding production areas should consider thick polyurethane systems, as they can withstand conditions such as foot traffic, corrosive substances, heavy impact and thermal shock for an extended period of time.

Visual appeal is an important consideration for industrial floors, but the finish also needs to be able to retain its functional and aesthetic properties for an extended period of time, as an insufficiently robust floor will quickly fail within an industrial facility – exposing the site to contamination issues and presenting an unpleasant appearance.

For more information, contact Flowcrete on Tel: +27 (31) 461 3411 or via www.flowcretesa.co.za.