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Asbestos removed from nuclear power station

23 July 2010

Hertel has been part of a successful project with Magnox South to remove asbestos lagging from seven water tanks at Dungeness A nuclear power station. The work took just nine weeks, despite adverse weather conditions in February delaying the project.

Asbestos removed from nuclear power station
Asbestos removed from nuclear power station

Hertel worked alongside AcePSI and an in-house team provided by Magnox to remove 25 tonnes of asbestos from the eight-metre-tall deaerated turbine alternator water storage tanks.
Beginning in January, Hertel worked seven days a week to ensure the project was completed on time.

John Bastian, Hertel Site Manager at Dungeness, said: "The heavy snow forced the site to shut down for three days. When we returned we applied ourselves to make sure we made up for the time lost. We did well to achieve such a quick turnaround under intense time pressure.

"For safety, we created boundaries around the work area to enable us to better control over who entered or was working within the area. We kept the area clean and tidy, and developed a strong working relationship with the Magnox South team."

Hertel engineers were working in the turbine hall building, which is one of the highest hazard areas at Dungeness A. In total 11,000 man hours were completed with no incidents recorded.
An asbestos enclosure was set up around each tank, and scaffolding built to allow access to these areas. Each enclosure was smoke-tested before asbestos removal started, and air monitoring was carried out at each stage of the removal process to ensure no asbestos fibres were released.

The asbestos was injected with liquid to bind the fibres together and minimise the risk of the asbestos becoming airborne. Once the asbestos had been soaked it was removed with handheld tools and placed into waste skips in the turbine hall loading bay.

The tanks were then rubbed down with sandpaper and washed to remove the last of the asbestos. Finally, it was inspected by the analyst to ensure it was asbestos-free.
Chris Roots, Magnox South Project Manager at Dungeness, said: "During the nine weeks Hertel worked on this project, three and a half tonnes of asbestos was removed from each of the seven tanks. It was a challenging project, but the teams worked together to recover the plan with no accidents and only two event reports raised."

Kevin Williamson, Hertel Regional Manager, said: "We pulled out all the stops to complete this project within a short timeframe for the client, even with the bad weather. The fact there were no safety issues was all the more pleasing given the hazardous nature of the work in the turbine hall building."

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