Since digging began in 1979, the county had relied on a single four-inch, Gorman-Rupp, 10-hp electric submersible pump to keep the water out of the bottom of the quarry. In periods of heavy rains, the quarry utilized two pumps side-by-side to keep the water at a manageable level and the digging operation ongoing.
Originally, the pumps were placed at the quarry’s lowest point, a natural gathering area for water. The walls were 75-feet high and the Gorman-Rupp, 10-hp, submersible four-inch” pump was adequate to pump water off site. Water was pumped up the side of the quarry through a four-inch line and sent another 50 feet to a retaining pond on county grounds.
As the quarry grew deeper, the walls climbed higher. The two four-inch, Gorman-Rupp, 10-hp submersible pumps were still capable but county quarry foreman, Mickey Kerr, found the pumps were straining to pump water the additional distance. “The older pumps were still working well, but the effectiveness of pumping the water up the steeper walls was not as strong as it had been in the past due to the added vertical distance,” said Kerr.
Technicians at the quarry were pleased with the performance of the original Gorman-Rupp, 10-hp, submersible four-inch pump so they turned to the company to provide a solution for their ever-deepening rock quarry. Through the county’s experience with the existing pump and after additional research, Kerr knew he could count on Gorman-Rupp pumps to hold up to the rigours of a constantly changing quarry. “As we went deeper into this quarry, we had to step up our pump size to get the task accomplished,” said Kerr. “To get the job done right, we decided on a pair of Gorman-Rupp’s 65-hp electric pumps to replace the two 10-hp pumps.” The pumps, located in the customer’s pit in a sump hole at the base of the now 200-foot-high wall, were both attached to float switches that power up the pumps when the water reaches a certain level. The six-inch, Gorman-Rupp, 65-hp electric submersible S Series pumps easily pump water 300 feet, which includes 200 feet straight up the wall.
Furthermore, bigger pumps have benefited the county by pumping more water out of the quarry, lowering their overall operating costs and allowing them to dig deeper without having to invest in additional pumps. Kerr selected electric submersible pumps to allow water to be pumped anytime of the day or night and to re-allocate a worker responsible for refueling the diesel engines. “Being a county-owned entity, we had to stay within a budget while also finding the most effective manner in which to keep the water at a low level. The electric pumps best suited our needs. More water is now pumped faster than ever before.” The majority of the water is sent to a retaining pond on county property but Kerr also utilizes in-line valves to direct water flow to several applications. “In a mining situation, having a water truck is a must. We fill the truck with water daily and continually spray water on the roads leading into and out of the quarry to keep the dust to a minimum. We are also in the process of filtering the water in order to use it to cool the oil pumps that are used in our rock crushing operation.” Additionally, Kerr understood by choosing Gorman-Rupp pumps, down time would be kept at a minimum.
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