As the number of annual railcar shipments the United States continues to increase, optimizing safety during those shipments also gains in importance. Recognizing this, OPW’s Midland Manufacturing continues to develop innovative components focused
on the uneventful arrival of commodities, including pressure relief valves (PRVs) for general purpose and pressure railcars, along with Emergency Response Kits (ERKs) for use by first responders.
To assist with secure rail commodity transport and to protect people and communities, Midland has developed two new models of pressure relief valves:
- Smart-Flow® PRV: Smart-Flow was specifically designed to meet new DOT-117/TC-117 regulations that require tank cars on all high-hazard flammable trains (HHFT) and high-hazard flammable unit trains (HHFUT) built after Oct. 15, 2015, to have recloseable valves that
will not shear off during a rollover incident or succumb to pressure spikes during accident conditions. The Smart-Flow PRV satisfies these requirements by producing a flow rate of 10,730 standard cubic feet per minute (scfm) at a set-to-discharge
pressure of 75 psi. In other words, when the Smart-Flow valve detects a high-pressure situation, pressure discharge rapidly occurs at a controlled 10,730-scfm rate, reducing the likelihood that a high-energy event will result. Additionally, if
a fire were to occur, the Smart-Flow PRV can withstand a 100-minute pool fire and 30-minue jet fire without rupturing. The stainless-steel Smart-Flow’s compact profile (less than 9”) helps prevent shearing, is retrofittable on existing
rail tank cars with standard mounting configurations and protects against corrosion that can compromise performance.
- A-1076 PRV: The innovative top-guide design of the A-1076 PRV retains traditional dual-stem guide points, but reduces the PRV’s height profile to less than 3”. This allows the A-1076 PRV, which fits traditional internal mounting configurations,
to provide protection against valve shear-off during dangerous rollover incidents. The A-1076 has a guided stem at the top and bottom, which enables it to achieve a repeatable 75-psi set-to-discharge pressure, while the flow rating of 965 scfm
allows it to quickly and consistently relieve pressure as needed. The PRV’s body, stem, retainer, spring, follower and all wetted components are constructed of stainless steel with an optional cap, flue and chain also available to help reduce
In the realm of ERKs, Midland offers its B-240/B-243 Emergency Response Kit,
which has been developed to give emergency responders three easy-to-use cover assemblies and a carrying case that contains all of the tools and parts needed to quickly and safely cap hazmat leaks emanating from the top of pressurized railcars in the
event of an accidental or non-accidental release incident.
The ERK consists of a toolbox containing tools and replacement parts; cover cans of five different sizes that can be used to cap a leaking valve or fitting, along with corresponding gaskets; and a bridge to secure a cover can to the railcar’s manway
cover plate. All of the tools and parts are highly engineered and designed to be durable under varying pressures, product flows and general abuse they are subject to during a hazmat-release incident.
Midland offers ERK training classes and videos that are formatted to give the user the knowledge to perform confidently during dangerous release incidents. It is recommended that all first responders practice using the components in the ERK at least twice
a year and train with a hazmat railcar as a way to better familiarize themselves with the railcar’s components and where things can go wrong. The ultimate goal is for first responders to feel as comfortable as possible with the ERK and its components
and capabilities long before they ever have to use it.
Visit opwglobal.com to see how Midland and the rest of OPW are “Defining What’s Next” while protecting people, the environment and enhancing business performance.