MAGOG, Quebec—Camso Ltd. has released a tongue-in-cheek video to help educate the general public on static electricity hazards linked to non-marking forklift tires.
For most of the world, static buildup is an invisible phenomenon, Camso said, but for those who work anywhere a forklift runs on non-marking tires, the potential for static shocks—up to 50,000 volts—is an ever-present hazard.
Because non-marking tires use silica, an insulator, instead of carbon black in their compounds, static electricity generated is stored rather than dissipated, creating safety hazards, Camso said.
Among the hazards are operator injury and safety issues; fires—static electricity can create sparks at high voltages; and facility damages — electric discharge can cause outages and circuit damage not only to the lift itself but to other components and equipment within the facility.
"We wanted to take a lighter approach to address the serious issue of static buildup in non-marking tires," Erick Bellefleur, vice president and general manager – material handling, said.
"Of course, the reality in warehouses is not as severe as what we've pictured in the animation, but the world we've created gives us the opportunity to educate on a serious topic while using a fun tone!"
In the animated video, Camso depicts a warehousing and materials-handling industry that has become a dark and dreary place where a strange hazard lurks. People no longer greet each other, shake hands or give a gentle tap on the shoulder—all of them are too afraid to catch that "thing."
And that thing turns out to be static electricity buildup in non-marking forklift tires and the charge that comes from it.
"Research shows that our attention span is at its lowest ever, all the while we're deeply absorbed in our work, but overloaded every minute with marketing messages," said Lysandre Michaud-Verreault, marketing manager of material handling. "With a 2D animation, a sarcastic tone and catchy characters, we were able to spark the customers' curiosity, so they'd get the essentials of it."
The video features the Solideal PON 775 NMAS, a non-marking tire with anti-static rubber technology that Camso launched in 2018.
The tire dissipates static by means of a column of carbon-black-reinforced rubber from an inner layer that protrudes through the outer non-marking layer, according to a patent filing.