Gauteng-based facilities maintenance, civil works and general construction specialist Tswelokgotso Trading Enterprise (TTE) has implemented a new water-blasting technology from the US to effectively execute several maintenance projects, including that of OR Tambo International Airport.
TTE bought the SK3000, or the ‘Stripe Hog’ water-blasting system, last year for $400 000, says commercial adviser Simon Makola.
He tells Engineering News that TTE is one of only two companies using this technology in Africa, with the other system being used in Egypt.
The SK3000 is loaded or attached to a truck to make it mobile and is used in road surface and tarmac maintenance, including road- surface paint removal and thermoplastic removal. It also removes rubber build-up residue from runways using ultrahigh pressure through a specialised nozzle. The system vacuums the removed debris, instantly making the surface area ready for repainting and remarking within an hour.
The system can also be used for industrial cleaning and the high-pressure cleaning of ships within dry docks.
The ‘Stripe Hog’ is also an environment-friendly cleaning and maintenance technology that uses clean tap water instead of harmful chemicals or other systems that use sand-blasting methods.
The water-blasting system can also remove oil and paint which is disposed of in accordance with waste removal regulations through a vacuum system, thus, preventing the contamination of rivers from debris washed in by rain.
“The versatility of the SK3000 enables us to accomplish our maintenance projects with improved efficiency because it cleans and vacuums simultaneously,” Makola adds.
He further notes that maintenance of the SK3000 system only requires the replacement of the waterjets when they wear out but that TTE has already identified a local supplier for this.
About the Company
TTE is a wholly owned black economic empowerment Level 1 company, which is currently responsible for the maintenance and refurbishment of OR Tambo International Airport’s tarmac surfaces, including runways and taxiways.
TTE is also responsible for runway rehabilitation repairs, including potholes on the airside of the airport, vegetation control, and grass cutting, which assists in bird control, as bird strikes can be potentially dangerous for an aircraft.