Southern Water (UK) has recently purchased its 800th Tetra portable gas detector from Crowcon. This represents a major investment and is a testament to the reliability and durability of the device.
"We chose the Tetra because it is simple to use, easy to maintain and extremely durable," said Southern Water's senior health and safety advisor Andy Nicholls. "They are life-preserving bits of equipment and you simply can't compare the cost of a life against the cost of a detector. Saying that, the units were very good value for money."
The detectors are used primarily by staff working in confined spaces in the wastewater, sewerage, clean water and process water sectors and for procedures such as chlorine change-over. They are also used by support staff such as scientists, technicians and health and safety advisors, and for staff training.
"We are now in the era of the 'intelligent worker', who wants to understand better what is going on around them," continued Andy. "Our staff are fully conversant with health and safety legislation and expect to have the right equipment at all times. The Tetra is therefore integral to our business — I can't think of anything that is wrong with it."
Designed for the most demanding conditions, the Tetra can monitor up to four gases at once, including oxygen, flammable gas and a full range of toxic gases. It has a single button that controls all functions — even with a gloved hand — and a bright display gives simultaneous viewing of all gas readings, alarm conditions and battery life. The unit is water- and dust-resistant to IP65, floats in water and is ATEX approved for use in hazardous areas.
If a gas hazard is detected, the Tetra gives an instant warning with a powerful 94 dBA alarm, an extremely bright red and blue alternate flashing lights and by vibrating. "Our staff really like the red/blue light," commented Andy. "There are so many flashing red lights all around these days that the red/blue one instantly stands out. The alarm is also impossible to miss, even in the very noisy environments our staff often work in."
The Tetra's lithium ion battery provides up to 16 hours continuous use. "This is more than enough for our purposes," added Andy. "Staff often have the Tetras on for 12 hours at a time, which still leaves them with spare battery life should they need it."