Excavation Contractor Implements Unique Shoring Solution at Nuclear Generation Plant
Sometimes, redundancy is a good thing, especially when considering safety at one of the country’s nuclear generation plants. All systems must be working efficiently with backups to the backups. That is why one such nuclear power plant contracted the installation of a new generator-powered fire-suppression system to back up the existing power-dependent fire-suppression system.
This particular “excavation” project presented a unique challenge for the contractor charged with installing more than 1,000 linear feet of pipe and conduit. The challenge? Most of the high-pressure water pipeline was installed underground at the facility. Normally, this would not be a problem for any experienced underground utility contractor, except for one thing. There are a lot of pipes and utilities already in the ground at the nuclear plant, crisscrossing the path of the new fire-safety system.
Non-Traditional Pipeline Installation Requires Innovative Trench Shoring
Knowing they needed a little help with the trench shoring aspects of the project, the contractor called in the trench safety specialists at NAXSA member Efficiency Production. “The contractor’s project manager came in to look at some shoring equipment and talk about potential solutions for the underground project at the power plant,” says Allan L. Baron, Efficiency’s national sales manager. “We’ve worked with the contractor before, so we understood the challenges they were facing,” Baron says.
The original idea Baron pitched was to use a Shore-Trak™ Sheeting Guide Frame, Efficiency’s marquee shoring system for navigating cross-trench utilities. “However, after taking into consideration the excavation safety requirements at the plant, it became evident that Shore-Trak wasn’t going to work,” admits Baron.
New Accessory Provides Solution for Modular Aluminum Shoring System
Instead, the solution turned out to be Efficiency Production’s Build-A-Box™ modular aluminum shoring system with new integrated Sheeting Guide Frames. The Sheeting Guide Frame utilizes lightweight corrugated aluminum sheets to shore closely around existing cross-trench utilities. The guide frame panel integrates seamlessly into any Build-A-Box configuration, and the aluminum sheets can be installed by hand.
Contractor Contends With Crisscrossing ‘Minefield’ of Existing Underground Utilities
The excavation contractor had on rent over 80 guide frame panels and almost 650 8-foot-long corrugated aluminum sheets to shore the entire length of open trench. All told, pipes, conduits, and duct-bank bundles crossed the primary trench at 22 points.
One other advantage of the all-aluminum sheets is that the contractor could cover the new high-pressure water pipe and other conduit bundles with flowable fill directly against the sheets; no forms necessary.
Efficiency Production, “America’s Trench Box Builder™,” is an Arcosa Shoring Products company. For more information, visit www.efficiencyproduction.com.