When one of the tallest scaffold structures in the UK was about to be dismantled from the Milton Court tower in the middle of the City of London, maintaining the highest level of operative and public safety in this built up location was paramount. Following close consultation with COMBISAFE, the leader in temporary collective protection at height, specialist contractor Connect Scaffolding installed the COMBISAFE Safety Net Fan Maxi.
Located on a restricted site on Silk Street adjacent to the Barbican and built by main contractor Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd, the 112.5 metre Milton Court tower is the largest residential development to be built in the City of London since the Barbican and is set to provide 285 luxury apartments along with a world-class annexe to the internationally renowned Guildhall School of Music & Drama.
The combination of the highest ground based scaffolding structure in the capital which had a minimal footprint, and the proximity of the works to the general public presented significant risks. Faced with a number of critical milestones during the dismantling operation, Connect Scaffolding worked with the client on a solution which met their specific requirements.
We established through Connect Scaffoldings internal risk management processes and meetings with our client Sir Robert McAlpine, that we needed a high productivity solution which offered us both the highest level of safety attainable as well as the time benefits that we were looking for commented Will Rolfe, Operations Director at Connect Scaffolding.
Connect Scaffolding had worked with COMBISAFE on previous projects and were fully aware of the brands reputation for innovative safety solutions. The COMBISAFE Safety Net Fan Maxi was chosen as it offered an increased level of protection and containment against falling debris while the scaffold structure was dismantled particularly in respect to the resultant high wind loads when working at such a height.
From the initial project meeting we developed a conceptual approach which needed to be tested physically, added Karl Degroot, Operations Director at Connect Scaffolding. COMBISAFE facilitated this at their training centre at Northampton where we were able to establish that the Safety Net Fan Maxi gave us all the benefits required, as well as establishing that a manual installation was possible. This had not been attempted before on a pure scaffolding application using the Safety Net Fan Maxi. The service that COMBISAFE provided from initial first enquiry through to delivery was first class.
Without placing any operatives at risk of falling, the Safety Net Fan installation was carried out at various levels from behind the netting on existing working platforms. This method proved very successful and would not have been possible using traditional products or methods.
Following considerable research and development, the Safety Net Fan Maxi is not only more cost effective, adaptable and user friendly but it is significantly stronger than conventional methods with an energy absorption of up to 4.4 Kj.
With the project set for completion in the summer of 2013, Sir Robert McAlpine has been impressed with Connect Scaffoldings innovative approach with regards to risk management and in the use of the COMBISAFE Safety Net Fan Maxi which has ensured both the workforce and pedestrians are protected from falling objects and debris during its construction.
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