How Do We Make Containment Floors?

Hi, I’m Tracy Switzer, and today I’m going to answer the question “How do we make containment floors in our fiberglass buildings?” Sometimes our customers come to us, and they have a special need to contain a hazardous liquid or chemical.

In this particular case, this building is being sold to a nuclear plant in the Midwest. In the corner of the building, there is going to be a tank that carries about 550 gallons of a hazardous chemical, and if that tank were to rupture, the leak has to be contained within the building. It can’t leak out and get into the environment. So what we do is we create a sump basin underneath the walking surface. What you might be able to see here is that we created a ledge around the enclosure, about six inches tall, and some supports that are also specifically located to carry the load of the tank. A fiberglass grid that a walking surface will be resting on top of that surface and the area between, the six inches of depth, is designed to carry the spilled liquid, if there were to be such a spill.

The other hazard here is that the chemical could get onto somebody working in the facility, and it needs to be rinsed off immediately. So we’ve also molded onto the floor a basin for a shower, so somebody can come in here, pull an emergency chain and have fresh water rinsed over them, and then that is contained in the shower basin and pumped out.

Five hundred fifty gallons of hazardous liquid is heavy, so to transfer that load through the fiberglass grating to the steel sump floor that’s underneath this basin, that fiberglass grating is going to sit on these rigid supports that will carry the load.

After the sump basin is prepared, the next phase is to install the fiberglass grating system. Fiberglass grating has open cells that allow liquids to pass down through the cells, and the walking surface is still non-skid, so there’s no slip issues. It’s rigid, but it still needs to be supported. So in the open areas, there’ll be support columns that keep the grating from bouncing and gives support to who’s walking on the top of the surface.

Custom containment basins are just one more way we customize shelters to meet your specific needs.

Remember, if it was built by Shelter Works, it was built for life.