Frequently Asked Questions about Floating Boom
Thank you for your interest in Orion Boom. To help get the information you need about boom products and applications, please review these Boom FAQs.
What is a floating boom?
A ‘Boom’ is a floating barrier used to control the movement of substances that float on the surface of water. Floating booms divert or contain floating debris, aquatic plants, trash and even oil to collection areas. Once collected, the materials can be extracted and in some cases recycled.
Q: How do I know if I need a boom or a curtain?
Boom are used to contain (or block) substances (oil, trash, seaweed, logs, or other debris) floating on the surface of the water. On the other hand, turbidity curtains are used to contain both floating debris and sediment suspended beneath the surface of the water.
Q: Do you manufacture boom?
Yes! GEI Works proudly designs and manufactures curtain and boom at our facility in Sebastian, Florida. We take great pride in the workmanship, durability and success of our products. Our objective is to provide you with a solution that works.
Q: What lengths is boom available in?
It depends on the type of boom that your project requires. Nearly all of our boom is is available in sections of 50 or 100 feet in length. Some are available in 24 foot sections or custom sizes. Steel Mesh Boom is available only in 8 foot sections. Boom sections are designed to interlock, so that you can connect them to form the length of barrier that your project needs.
Q: How do I know which type of boom I need?
This will be determined by several key factors, including the type of materials to be contained (oil, debris, plants, etc.) and envrionmental factors like current.
Q: Does the boom come in other colors?
Yes! Yellow is the standard, for high visibility. However, we do have several other custom boom colors available upon request.
Q: How do I determine what depth is needed for my boom skirt?
Boom skirt is frequently customized to the depth needed for a specific project. We can help you determine the best depth to ensure optimal performance for your project.
Q: Is there a best practice for installing anchors and buoys with boom?
Yes. There are a couple of common errors that beginning boom installers make. Sometimes users will anchor the curtain directly to the ocean/lake/river floor, or attach the anchor directly to the boom. These methods are not correct. Both of these options significantly impair the boom's performance and create excessive load and strain. This can damage your boom. Instead, we recommend following the diagram on this page as an anchoring guide.
Q: What if I don't use the right number of anchors?
Simply put, without proper anchoring, your project will fail. Anchoring keeps your boom in proper position and accounts for reasonable fluctuations due to weather. The impact of not using enough anchors (or placing them incorrectly) is significant:
1) The boom will not stay in position causing the debris or surface substances to bypass the barrier.
2) Insufficient anchoring places additional strain on the boom itself. This frequently causes unnecessary damage, shortening the boom's use-life.
3) Picture a parachute in the water. With enough current, a poorly anchored boom system will take flight and can lead to serious liability issues.
Q: How many anchors do I need for my floating boom?
It depends on the current, depth, and environment of your project. We can help. Our representatives use several key factors to determine both the number and placement of the anchors for minimizing the load placed on your boom. We can't state it strongly enough, proper anchoring is crucial to your project's success and to protecting your investment in boom. Please Contact Us for assistance. +1-772-646-0597.
Q: How do I install boom?
Installation instructions are boom-specific. Please see the installation guide from the product page of the type of boom you're considering.
Q: Can a boom be repaired?
We do have patch kits available, depending on the nature, location, and extent of the tear on your boom. Please call us for more information 1-772-646-0597 or Contact Us. We can also offer advice on how best to care for your boom, for damage prevention and longer use-life.
Q: Do I need lights for my floating boom?
You will want to check your local regulations for lighting requirements of floating barriers on public waterways. With boater safety in mind, it is common to have night-time lighting requirements for barriers in public waters. This also helps protect your barrier. See Floating Marker Lights.
Q: What is a tow bridle and why is it important?
A tow bridle is used when hauling the boom out into a body of water for installation, or when relocating the barrier. A tow bridle alleviates the stress that towing can place upon the boom fabric. It helps deliver your boom safely and damage-free to its in-water destination for installation. It can also be used to anchor the boom to the shore, in appropriate applications. See Turbidity Curtain Accessories.
Q: Can you clean and re-use floating oil boom?
Oil containment boom can be cleaned and reused but the contaminated water has to be handled very carefully. See Recommended Oil Boom Disposal.
Q: Do you provide installation services?
Yes! We can provide you with the peace of mind that comes with knowing that your boom is installed properly. We provide installation support services to mid and central Florida. Installation assistance at other locations (US or International) can also be accommodated. Please Contact Us for more information or a price quote for boom installation services.
Q: Do you keep boom in stock?
Yes, we do keep a supply of floating boom in stock. Please don't hesitate to call us to check available inventory. If not in stock, we can normally accommodate a 7-10 business day lead time for boom manufacturing (depending on the size of the order, type of curtain, and any special requirements).