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Stories Behind the Products: World Ocean Day

By FloridaMakes Network posted 06-08-2020 00:00

  

Tarps etc. INC The Leader in Quality & Service

World Ocean Day is when the world observes, reflects and participates in ocean conservation. Animals play a huge part in ocean conservation, and due to humans intervening and damaging their ecosystem, it’s up to us to help rescue and rehabilitate the animals that are endangered or crying for help.

Tarps etc. is a Central Florida manufacturing company that produces tarps. Headquartered in Florida, they have found a niche area to utilize their products –– marine life! Their tarps are designed and used to help rescue animals, sometimes as big as a whale or as small as a manta ray. They have supported marine rescues and rehabilitation within and beyond Florida.

We spoke to Marc Brown from Tarps etc., who was able to highlight some of the marine-focused projects they’ve done. While their business is generally focused on the trucking industry, they have been able to innovate and create custom products for marine life, which Marc considers it the most exciting aspect of the business!

“We’ve created slings and stretchers for marine rehabilitation, including animals such as sharks, fish, turtles, and the transportation of these animals, such as when they need to be separated from other animals for specialized rehabilitation,” said Marc Brown. “Additionally, we have constructed safety nets to surround aquarium viewing areas, large separation nets that are bolted into tanks for different animals that need medical attention or are currently pregnant and need to be in isolation for safety, as well as slings for manta ray feeding, so that employees can monitor and ration the food intake.”

Jet pilot getting into an aircraft.

Metal cart with tarp full of liquid.

A tarp with perforations.

Tarps etc. is also working on creating various marine transport nets, with consideration of the biological and logistical situations involved with each individual animal. Marc explained that when he is designing a tarp for marine life, he has to think completely about the animal’s anatomy because their comfort and safety is his top priority. In addition to the design, the functionality of the tarp is also important. He explained that if you use the product to prevent external light and disturbances inside the tanks during transportation, this will allow the animal to stay calm. For one transport, they had to create a waterproof liner, which Tarps etc. used a heat-seal to create, and then reinforced it with traditional mesh for a liner of strength and to ensure it is waterproof. Another transport system had to be redesigned to consider the head of a hammerhead shark so that the device would not cause the eyes to become irritated. Currently, they are designing a new sea turtle transport vinyl and velcro lining that will be completed soon.

Marc explained that he would love for his company to become more involved with animal rescue efforts outside of traditional aquariums, where most of their products are used. When asked his favorite part of being involved with marine life, he explained “this type of work allows us to put ideas into products. I enjoy being a part of something that feels bigger, even though I know my part is small, transporting these animals to safety is an important part of the process.”

Tarps etc., plays a small part in ocean conservation, but it’s important to stay innovative and find niche areas to utilize your products in ways you never thought that they would be used. These tarps are applied to assist animals that are in need due to the footprint humans have left on our oceans –– typically to nurse animals back to health and repopulate animals that are endangered.

Tarps etc. is a member of the Manufacturers Association of Central Florida (MACF), part of the FloridaMakes network. For more information about Tarps etc., please contact their Business Advisor, Dan Sutter, at dan.sutter@floridamakes.com.


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