Well-known for its innovation in devising customised solutions for specific client requirements, rope-access specialist Skyriders recently received recognition from a major petrochemical producer for achieving a significant reduction in its maintenance costs, and boosting health and safety at the same time.
The recognition was for a methodology devised by Skyriders to assist with removing bulky equipment from difficult to reach locations for inspection, calibration and repair, and then returning the equipment safely to its exact location. Marketing Manager Mike Zinn explains that, due to the strict health and safety requirements of the petrochemical industry, a lengthy consultation process was embarked upon with the client’s safety department to refine the solution.
The biggest challenge posed was that, while the equipment was too bulky to be manoeuvred by personnel, it was not sufficiently heavy to require cranage. However, a crane was still necessary due to the restricted or limited access, with a shortage of space in which the equipment could be manoeuvred with ease.
A diagonal cable way was erected to lift and move the piece of equipment up and over any obstacles, which weighed 80 kg. Thereafter it was transported to the workshop. Upon its return, the diagonal cable way system was simply reverse-rigged in order to return the equipment to the interior of the tank.
Zinn adds that the system devised by Skyriders has diverse applications, depending on its weight limitation. “The way forward is to learn from and refine this methodology even further, and increase the scope and flexibility of its use.”
A highly experienced four-person team from Skyriders completed the project on 17 December 2019. It is anticipated that more work will be forthcoming from the petrochemical producer, which has equipment in additional tanks that needs to be moved for maintenance and calibration.