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PMA Products Tough On Termites

Termites: known for their incredible ability to devour, the tiny insects have presented huge problems in countries such as Australia, America and Africa for centuries - but if you thought we were safe, think again. The threat of termite infestations in the UK is increasing, with recent reports showing that, despite a £190,000 eradication programme, the UK has its own 12 year-old colony which shows no sign of diminishing.

Although termites are commonly associated with the demolition of wooden structures, the insects also pose a threat to rail connections and wiring systems. Luckily for PMA, the company are pleased to report that their cable protection systems are one kind of conduit these little creatures won’t be munching on.

Renowned for their ability to destruct timber buildings, bridges and frames in record timings, termites can also present two separate dangers for cable protection materials: one chemical and one mechanical. PMA tests have discovered however, that polyamide has good resistance to formic acid as produced by termites and the surface hardness ensures that PMA products also withstand mechanical damage by such insects.

Philip Allington, PMA’s Application & Development Manager comments: “PMA products can and do protect cables against termite, insect and rodent attack. Presently used signalling cables possess two layers that have been used against such damage - the outermost nylon jacket serves as the primary protection, also serving as a mechanical protection and providing sufficient slipperiness. Secondly, the copper tapes are used as a shield against termite attack, whilst also provides electrical shielding for the cable.”

A new study examining the DNA sequences of five genes in the insects has unveiled large similarities between termites and a species of wood-eating cockroaches – leading to the bugs’ new classification of ‘social cockroaches’ by leading expert, Dr Paul Eggleton of the Natural History Museum.

With recent reports revealing that Britain’s only colony of termites has survived 12 years of attempts to wipe it out using chemicals, concerns of the potential damage which could be caused if numbers cannot be controlled are mounting. Scientists suspect the colony first came to the UK from the Canary Islands in a plant pot, and are at a loss on how to counteract the bugs’ resistance. In the meantime, polyamide presents an answer for installations on railways and industrial buildings: the perfect pest-proof solution for the protection of cables.

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Arundel Jones Associates Ltd
Hill Farm Business Park, Linton Hill, Maidstone, Kent ME17 4AL
Tel : 01622 745333

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