Concrete Products

MAY 2014

Concrete Products covers the issues that attract producers of ready mixed and manufactured concrete focusing on equipment and material technology, market development and management topics.

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26 • may 2014 FEATURE BY DON MARSH Augmenting a policy to keep vehicles in drive or forward gear at Aggregate Industries US is the installation of automated, drive-through mixer truck wash down equipment—a best management practice with safety, quality control and water conservation benefits. Aggregate Industries US began piloting water spray systems at four Minnesota plants in 2008. It enlisted a commercial vehicle wash equipment specialist, Key Solutions of Dassel, Minn., to tailor mixer-suited nozzle bars and racks, and oversee system engineering and installation. With capital expenditures limited throughout the market downturn, the produc- er confned the automated truck wash down to Minnesota. Managers noted time sav- ings for outbound drivers and at the close of business, when mixer trucks subjected to pressure water spray cycles required less cleaning than those drivers had washed with yard hoses. Aggregate Industries quality control staff also took note of slump and strength uniformity of orders delivered in trucks passing through automated wash down racks. Technicians attributed mix quality and consistency to the controlled amount of slump-adjusting water—typically 3.2 to 3.4 gal. per cycle—added to drums during the spray pass through. Pilot systems were set for 30-second wash down cycles using 12 gallons of water. A Cost Saving Initiative review throughout Aggregate Industries' operations found the automated truck wash down method in Minnesota ready for wider distribution. From 2008–2012, notes Aggregate Industries/Meyer Material Area Manager Brent Blanken- horn, "There was a top-down effort to identify ways of getting mixer trucks in and out Aggregate Industries comes clean Pump station with reservoir and 30-hp motor. PHOTOS: Concrete Products Concrete Products May 2014.indd 26 4/28/2014 10:42:34 AM

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