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Contractors World  - UK & Ireland
2014 Vol 4 No 1

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Record-breaking continuous underwater concrete pour - page 2 of 4

Diagram of the caisson dimensions and image of concrete being placed through tremie pipes slowly pushing out the sea waterThe success of the project depended upon there not being the slightest interruption in the pour and an impeccable performance from the six shore-based concrete pumps - Putzmeister M36-4, M42-5 and M47-5 - were, therefore, critical.

Diagram of the caisson dimensions and image of

Professional Concrete Pumping Managing Director Peter Liddle said: “This technically challenging project is a testament to the commitment and professionalism of our staff and we were delighted to have been chosen by FCBC to work as part of their team.”

The operation involved the creation of huge concrete plugs inside the foundation caissons and Central Tower cofferdam. It was launched in late July 2013 with 7,400 m³ being successfully poured into the North Tower caisson.

Concrete being placed through tremie pipes slowly pushing out the sea water      This was followed, in early August, by a 4,400 m³ concrete pour into the Centre Tower cofferdam. Finally, in late August, came the world-record-breaking South Tower caisson operation with a total of 16,869 m³ of concrete poured into the caisson to form a solid plug more than 26 metres in depth. The pour was completed on September 5.

Concrete being placed through tremie pipes slowly pushing out the sea water


The average pour rate for the South Tower caisson was 47 m³ per hour, with the total weight of the concrete almost 39,000 tonnes. A high-flow mix was used so no vibration was necessary.
Carlo Germani, FCBC Project Director, said: “The underwater concrete pour operation has gone without a hitch thanks to extremely detailed advance preparation carried out by the team.
“This achievement is a credit to the skills of everyone involved. It is a huge milestone for the project because it means that the focus can now switch from below the waves to the upward construction of the three towers above the waters of the Forth.”

Second Road Bridge

Construction on the Forth Replacement Crossing commenced in the summer of 2011, due to the deterioration in condition of the neighbouring Forth Road bridge, which opened in 1964, and concerns over its long-term viability.

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