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Preventing fire hydrants freezing up at minus 40°C

Published on 21 May 2009


One of the fire cabinets from Jo Bird which protect the fire hydrants positioned around the Kashagan Oil Development Project in Kazakhstan
One of the fire hydrant models from Jo Bird currently protecting fire hydrants  on a Kazakhstan oil development

The winter climate around the Caspian Sea regularly sees temperatures plummet to -35 to -40°C, creating major challenges in keeping water liquid in an environment where the sea is frozen for up to 5 months in the year.

The fire hydrants positioned around the vast Kashagan Oil Development Project in Kazakhstan are being protected against these winter temperatures by specially insulated and heated cabinets designed by one of the world's leading manufacturers of fire and safety storage solutions, UK based Jo Bird & Co Ltd.

Firefighting equipment is key to the safety of the teams of workers active on the oilfields 24 hours a day. A consignment of 22 of these specially designed fire hydrant housings has recently been shipped out to Kasakhstan through Jo Bird's distributor, Tyco, to provide long term and permanent frost-free protection to the emergency services' fire hydrants on one of the largest oilfields in the region.

Measuring 2m high and 1.4m wide the cabinets, made from highly durable GRP, are heavily insulated with 50mm of polyurethane foam and contain explosion-proof integral heaters.

Jo Bird regularly supplies protective enclosures and cabinets for fire and safety equipment used in the oil and gas exploration and production industry. It has developed specialist skills in the design and manufacture of products for use in some of the most inhospitable environments anywhere in the world. Securing this second order against stiff international competition is seen by the company as an endorsement of its international reputation, design capability and product quality.

Jo Bird's MD Guy Atkins said: "Back in 2001 we shipped the first 24 heated hydrant cabinets which continue to give good service. The product is Lloyds Register Type test approved and this, coupled with its in-service performance, underlines the cost benefits our products offer customers needing long term reliability coupled with low lifetime cost. As an EN9001 quality standards accredited manufacturer we can design and develop within strict quality control standards products to meet virtually any working environment in the world." 

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