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Contractors World UK Ireland Vol 6 No 2

be a challenge when carrying out inspection

work. Together with Lanes Group, we used CCTV

and new ways of working to overcome this issue

and deliver this part of the project ahead of


The CCTV surveys are being carried out on the ‘six

foot’ central tunnel drainage culvert between the two

lines that run through the tunnel, which is 7,008 m (4

miles 24 yards) long.

The culvert ranges up to 1200 mm wide and up to

500mm tall. Over a number of decades, the original

brick-built culvert has been repaired, so in some places

is lined with concrete or steel.

One of its main tasks is to collect water from the

‘Great Spring’ which seeps into the tunnel. An estimated

50 million litres of the spring water are pumped from

the tunnel every day and released into the River Severn.

The joint Lanes Group and Amey teams had to walk

three miles to the Welsh end of the tunnel, then up to

another mile into the tunnel, to reach their work sites,

with equipment transported on rail trolleys.

Working in 12-hour shifts, two four-person teams -

made up of two CCTV survey engineers and two Amey

track operatives - worked away from each other from a

central point, overseen by a Lanes Group supervisor.

Robotic crawler cameras were used to record HD-

quality video of the inside of the track culvert. This

method was augmented by the deployment of zoom-fo-

cus pole inspection cameras.

Lanes Operations Manager Mark Scott, one of the

site supervisors, said:

“Where track ballast had blocked the culvert,

stopping the crawler camera from getting

through, the pole camera allowed us to look past

the blockage and ascertain its condition.

“It was one of the approaches we devised

for this particular project to allow us to maintain

high levels of productivity in challenging condi-

tions, as we want to achieve as much as possible

in the track possession time we have.”

The Severn Tunnel was built by the Great Western

Railway between 1873 and 1886. It held the record as

the longest main line rail tunnel until the High Speed 1

tunnels in Kent opened in 2003.

Lanes Group


Beam Grab Improves Delivery of

Precast Elements

Lynx Precast supplies a range of products to all sectors

of the UK construction industry including housebuild-

ers, main contractors, groundworkers, civil engineering

contractors, builders merchants and self-builders.

Lynx Precast understands that each site and cus-

tomer has different delivery requirements and expec-

tations, and that when delivering its products, vehicles

and material handling attachments must be specified

to suit.

To aid in delivering customer service, Lynx Precast

contacted B&B Attachments to supply it with beam

grab attachments.

The grabs fitted to Lynx Precast crane delivery ve-

hicles, assist in the smooth delivery process of beams

where “supply only” customers do not require the aid

of mechanical offloading facilities on site.

Each Beam grab, with optional lifting hooks and a

rubber pad gripper arrangement, is designed to pick

up a range of different sized beams and profiles. Lifting

either 4 or 6 beams at once, the beam grabs supplied

to Lynx Precast also have individual ball lock valves

fitted, which enables single beams to be clamped and

released when required.

The universal crane mounting plate enables the at-

tachment to suit various adaptors, and the quick release

couplings allow a quick change over to alternative at-

tachments when required.

Andy Teasdale, Managing Director at Lynx Precast


“Our customers are our priority. We wanted to

make our delivery process as smooth and as safe

as possible. The Beam Grabs supplied and

manufactured by B&B Attachments have helped

us to achieve this. The ease of use and reliable

operation of the attachments when moving our

products has also helped improve daily


B&B Attachments Ltd