This project was located South of Kaikoura at Rosy Morn or more commonly known to contractors working in the area as Slip 29, which is one of the many slips brought down in the 2016 earthquake. The scope of the project was to construct a 3.5m tall 100m long Gabion Basket Wall and Galmac safety fence adjacent to Slip 29, this was to serve as a rock fall protection barrier for both the rail and carriageway.
Access on this site was difficult, specifically when completing the backfill phase of the project, as the temporary sea block wall we were replacing needed to stay in place until all work was completed. This made getting material behind the wall difficult as there was not enough room to allow trucks to back in and dump. Instead material was lifted by excavators from the front face of the wall to the back which caused the process to be time consuming.
Early on in the construction process, the project manager and site engineer realised that traditional methods of using timber shutters to brace the gabion baskets was not going to be fast enough to meet the tight programme required by the client. Collectively the team developed an innovative steel plate concept that could be attached to an excavator to brace the baskets. The concept was quickly developed and brought to life by our very own in house engineering workshop. Once made, it was quickly trialled on site, and proved to be a massive success. The steel plate made the construction of the wall significantly faster, more efficient and allowed the front face of the gabion baskets to be flatter which in turn made the final product more aesthetically pleasing and of greater quality.
The plate also acted as a fall protection barrier which made it safer for crew member’s hand stacking rocks inside the baskets.