Raising the roof in a five-day operationOur plan involved removing the roof, opening up space within each of the 10 floors of the building, reinforcing the elevator and lifting it out of the factory in sections. Once outside, we had the space to remove the asbestos safely and demolish the vertical conveyor. The new one was inserted in the same way, building it up from bottom to top in sections hoisted into position one by one.
The whole procedure was carried out over the space of just five days, with contractors working round the clock to complete the work in the allotted time.
Safety was, of course, paramount. The unique constraints of the factory environment and confined space meant that conventional approaches to the removal of asbestos could not be followed. An independent safety officer therefore oversaw and checked all our arrangements. In addition, the entire factory was cleared during each of the 14 hoists as an extra precaution.
Solution is special because it achieves what appeared impossibleThe new elevator was made as future proof as possible with special coatings to protect the casing against abrasive products and designed for easier replacement of parts. During the shutdown, the maintenance team took what was a rare opportunity to access parts of the factory that were unreachable during daily operations. We also worked with production planners to identify operational scenarios to minimise production loss during the shutdown and to build up stock levels beforehand.
“Our solution was special because we managed to do what looked impossible in a period of just five days.” said Sander van den Brand, dry bulk and logistics engineer.
It was vital to co-ordinate closely with Aluchemie throughout the entire process so they understood the issues and the health and safety precautions. After a year of preparation, the operation proceeded as planned and the new elevator is in operation.
Sander van den Brand
Dry Bulk and Logistics Engineer Royal HaskoningDHV
- LocationRotterdam, Netherlands
- Period5 days
- ChallengeTo replace the bucket elevator running through the centre of a 10-storey factory safely and with minimal impact on production.
- SolutionThe plan involved removing the roof, opening up space within each of the 10 floors of the building, reinforcing the elevator and lifting it out of the factory in sections. Once outside, there was space to remove the asbestos safely and demolish the vertical conveyor. The new one was inserted in the same way, building it up from bottom to top in sections hoisted into position one by one.