Original Date: 02/28/2000
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Repackaging Station
Crane Army Ammunition Activity devised a method to increase safety, production, and ergonomics in the disposal/burning of ammunition. The new process uses two repackaging stations where the propellant is removed from the container via an overhead manipulator and placed in a hopper, thereby physically removing the system from the burning area.
Crane Army Ammunition Activity (CAAA) devised a method to increase safety, production, and ergonomics in the disposal/burning of ammunition. The current method requires workers to stand in the burning pans and manually lift and dump the propellants from containers that typically weigh 120 pounds, and as much as 190 pounds, into the burning pans. Although strict safety procedures are followed and no accidents have occurred, this method presents a risk to workers of extreme heat exposure. Should one of the pans accidentally ignite, no fire protection system exists in the operation. Manual lifting also presents an ergonomic problem and back injury possibilities. This method is currently being phased out and replaced with two Ammunition Burning Grounds repackaging stations which will eliminate the need to manually lift and dump propellants, saving time and money and increasing worker safety on the job (Figure 3-1).
The new process uses two repackaging stations where the propellant is removed from the container via an overhead manipulator and placed in a hopper. This system is physically removed from the burning area. The system contains a fire suppression system to counter any fires that may occur. The hopper is then moved to the burning pans via a rough-terrain, explosive-proof forklift. The self-dumping hoppers are then dumped into the burning pans. This process is approved as an Ammunition Peculiar Equipment (APE) item that passes APE regulations for this type of equipment use.
The cost of the system is $171,000 which will be recovered from reduced labor costs in one year. The current practice requires nine workers which will be reduced to seven when the system becomes fully operational. It is also projected that CAAA will be capable of performing five burns per day as opposed to the current four increasing production. With increased safety and production, this system proves to be a great improvement over the method which is being phased out. Worker injuries will be reduced if not eliminated by using the new process.
Figure 3-1. Repackaging Station
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