Building castles from the sky

November 22, 2019

RSK company CAN Geotechnical’s recent design and build project at Dunnottar Castle, Scotland, has attracted the interest of GeoDrilling International magazine that was keen to discover how using a helicopter helped safely move a drilling rig and a diesel hydraulic powerpack to a difficult-access site.

The remediation project – sorting a failure of a section of soil slope on the seaward side of the headland – should have been relatively straightforward; however, the cliff-edge location of Dunnottar Castle presented several challenges, especially as access to the headland was extremely limited. CAN’s mobilisation of plant and equipment to carry out its programme of works was understandably problematic, but it was able to design a novel solution that involved using a helicopter capable of lifting heavy items to the worksite.

CAN’s solution to a severely limited site access was to fly all of the all plant and materials in by helicopter

Safety on-site was paramount, especially with the size and weight of loads being airlifted across the location, so a temporary closure of the castle and the surrounding access roads and footpaths was arranged for one day at the start and end of the project. These closures allowed the helicopter lifts to be carried out safely and work to be undertaken and completed to schedule with minimal disruption to the castle’s normal working functions.

CAN’s solution took just four weeks to complete and Dunnottar Castle, which has stood in various forms since the third century, looks to stand firm for many more years to come.

You can read the full article on GeoDrilling International’s website.