Our objective at Aletek is to help you prevent engine-related fires and improve your fire mitigation strategy. Fire mitigation is essential for the safe operation of machinery, the safety and well-being of workers, and the destruction of mining equipment.

There’s no way to downplay the cost of mine site engine fires, with the worst-case scenario being a total loss of assets. The fire’s aftermath may result in increased insurance premiums, mine shutdowns, loss of production, and severe financial costs. Thankfully, Aletek thermal blankets can alleviate risk and help strengthen your onsite fire strategy.

In part one of our Thermal Blanket Essentials Series, let’s review the causes and impacts of fires and recommended prevention measures.

What are some causes of fires?

Poor equipment maintenance escalates the risk of fires, with faulty and worn equipment such as fuel lines and hoses majorly increasing the chances of equipment failure. Heat-critical engine components such as turbos, manifolds, exhausts, engine pipes and mufflers are sources of extreme temperatures.

Flammable fluids such as fuel or coolants from a burst pipe pose a significant fire risk if exposed to hot surfaces.

Fires also pose a considerable threat to the safety and well-being of onsite workers in the case of equipment failure and fires. Mobile equipment damage or loss is costly and avoidable if sites implement proper maintenance and preventative measures. An essential control measure is the application of Thermal Blankets to shield heat-critical engine components.

What can you do to prevent fires?

Blankets separate fuel sources from extreme-heated engine components. When properly maintained, thermal blankets provide a controlled physical barrier around these hot areas. For example, if a fuel line leaks, blankets will prevent the flammable fuel from contacting hot engine parts due to a high level of material impermeability.

Please refer to the installation order on drawings supplied with blanket kits to ensure the correct fitment order.

Aletek blankets are designed for maximum coverage and minimal gaps to reduce potential hotspots (exposed engine surfaces due to blanket fitting gaps). Correctly installed thermal blankets reduce outer-surface temperatures to shield heat-critical engine components like turbos, manifolds and engine pipes.

Consistent maintenance and correct installation are vital for effective fire mitigation. Thermal blankets require regular maintenance checks to rectify improper fitment, damage, or flammable fluid contamination. Aletek strongly advises that blankets are installed by experienced personnel.

What to check during maintenance?

To ensure thermal blankets are effectively utilised, follow these general inspection and maintenance practices:

  • Inspect blankets frequently (monthly inspection highly recommended)
  • Check blankets are fitted correctly, and all springs and tie-wires secured
  • Refit loose blankets
  • Replace damaged or missing blankets
  • Check for damage or contamination (oil/flammable liquids)
  • Replace oil-soaked or damaged blankets

Your next steps

Please refer to the Aletek Blankets Install & User Guide for comprehensive advice and best practice. Contact us to share your fire mitigation challenges with us and learn more about a winning blanket strategy for your fleet.

Next, in our Thermal Blanket essentials series, we will explore the “what, why, and where” of blanket use for mobile equipment assets.

Learn more

#aletek #maintenancetips #miningequipment



Is there a project you need help with?
Maybe you want to upgrade your fleet to reduce downtime. We’ve got dedicated Business Development Managers to help you meet your onsite goals. Get in touch to learn more and ask about our site-specific parts catalogues.

"*" indicates required fields

Terms and Conditions*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.