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Hangar Safety – The Role of Flooring

From huge military jets and commercial airliners to smaller business aviation and propeller aircraft, airplanes are complex machines that require a great deal of care and caution to handle safely. This extends beyond pilots and mechanics to all hangar personnel that come into contact with, or are in the vicinity of the aircraft. In addition to safety training for all employees, the facility itself should be designed and fitted out in a way that promotes best practices and minimizes the risk of accidental injuries.

One way to support this goal is by choosing an optimal hangar floor coating that is safe, long-lasting, and reliable. High performance epoxy and urethane floor coatings are an excellent option, having a proven performance record in countless of civil and military aviation facilities around the world for many years. These hangar flooring systems continue to be regularly specified due to their virtually seamless, easy-to-maintain surface, ability to withstand the wear and tear of busy aviation operations and customizable slip-resistance. Some flooring manufacturers even furnish electrostatic dissipative hangar options for improved static control safety where required.

Aircraft Hangar Safety Precautions

Florock Hangar System beautifully installed in a U.S. Military facility by AAA Flooring of CO.

Whether your hangar is used for storing aircraft when not in use or as a maintenance facility, where scheduled upkeep and repairs take place, the flooring system must be able to not only bear the weight of aircraft and other equipment, but must also resist damage from chemical exposure, abrasion and dropped tools. Fuel, oil and Skydrol® spills can be common, so the optimal hangar floor coatings are virtually seamless, nonporous, highly chemical-resistant, and easy to clean.

Quality epoxy, urethane and other resinous flooring systems that are fluid-applied over prepared concrete provide a smooth surface devoid of cracks or grout lines in which toxic substances can collect and eventually damage the slab structure. They are also extremely tough, demonstrating impressive resistance to wear, corrosive substances such as solvents, and more. A damaged flooring system can result in an uneven surface that poses a trip and fall hazard, so durable hangar flooring can be critical for worker safety.

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Visibility levels in an aircraft hangar can also play an important role in establishing a safe working environment. Installing a high-gloss flooring system in white, light gray or another nearly-white color can greatly increase illumination and overall visibility within the facility, especially for technicians working underneath large aircraft. Glossy, light reflective flooring enables the lighting from overhead to bounce back upward, brightening the entire space without the need for extra fixtures or additional ongoing electricity consumption. Light, solid colors also make it easier to identify and resolve any spills, small dropped parts, or damage, while the skid-resistant finish can help reduce slip events.

 

Multicolor Aircraft Hangar Floor Coverings for Safety

FloroThane Hangar Flooring 2015

FloroThane High Performance Urethane in a large hangar facility.

 

In large hangars where multiple aircraft are stored and moved on a regular basis, dividing the flooring into different colored sections can help establish a clear traffic flow and distinctly indicate work areas. Epoxy and urethane floor coatings can be effective safe hangar flooring options and are available in a wide array of colors that can be installed in patterns, complex graphics or even with embedded logo decals.

Traffic striping and floor markings, installed in accordance with operational, FAA or other agency guidelines in the requisite yellow, orange, red, and other colors, can be used to demarcate the various levels of precaution required, from a potential trip hazard location to areas where heavy machinery is allowed to operate.

These and other safety regulations, in place to protect both the workers and the equipment, can be effectively and economically supported with durable, high performance epoxy and urethane hangar flooring systems.