Project: HOLT Crane Painting, Gloucester City, NJ Client: Industrial Crane Services, on behalf of HOLT Logistics Corporation
Alpine Completes a Condensed Assignment in Record Time By Pivoting and Adjusting With Every Challenge
The HOLT Crane Painting project was a rehabilitation of two gantry cranes located on a dock over the Delaware River used for uploading cargo from overseas containers, primarily with produce. Originally purchased five decades ago by the client, the cranes held for them a strong sentimental value.
At the onset of the project, the client communicated that they wanted to do a considerable amount of work in a shortened period of time due to COVID-19. Prior to the pandemic, the project was scheduled to take place over 6-8 months but delays getting the project started reduced the execution time frame by a few months.
The project entailed rehabilitating two very tall cranes, 150 feet at the highest point, located side by side in a compromising area three feet over the Delaware River water. The footprint of the cranes was 90 square feet x 60 square feet long which created a challenge because at any given time there were four trades working on the site (which meant anywhere between 50-75 people were working alongside each other). The project site as a whole was a 1400 foot x 800 foot rectangular area which created a very tight space for all workers and equipment to operate, plus the Delaware River was on two sides of the rectangular work area.
The existing condition of both cranes was good for their age and location (over 50 years old and rehabilitated roughly 30 years ago). All substrates to be coated were carbon steel and the entire exterior of the cranes was overcoated. There were some minor interior components coated such as the interior of the Gear House, Power House and the entire floor on the interior of the Gantry Arms.
Alpine proceeded to first power wash all surfaces by means of using minimum 4000 psi and Hot Water Pressure Washers. Once surfaces were cleaned, the team proceeded to clean the failed and rusted areas by means of SSPC SP-2 and SSPC SP-3 methods.
Coordination, Communication and Flexibility Ensured the Safety and Efficacy of the Project
The HOLT Crane client required that the rehabilitation be performed on two gantry cranes located on a dock on the Delaware River with a footprint of 90 square feet x 60 square feet long. It was critical to the client that Alpine perform this project simultaneously with four trades working on the site in a very tight space for all workers and equipment to operate. This meant that the Alpine crew constantly worked around another 50+ workers in a small, confined space at any given time. Alpine was able to remain flexible and adjust its schedule on a daily basis.
Every day was different for the Alpine crew because of the number of other trades present onsite, which meant needing to coordinate and adapt to each other’s workspace and times of operation. Because everyone’s timelines needed to align, a daily morning meeting with other trade teams was mandatory in order to determine what would get done on that particular day. Excellent communication, coordination and collaboration was essential to the success of the project. A typical start to the day never ended the way it was intended! Alpine had to constantly communicate with the general contractor and other trades to ensure efficiency and productivity of all trades throughout the course of this project.
Alpine needed to take into account additional safety concerns due to lots of people and equipment operating in a small space and lots of activity going on overhead. There were lots of daily toolbox talks and discussions since the other trades on site were all welders and electricians.
In addition to working around multiple trades and the weather over the river with pop up storms, there were challenges working around the equipment. Some equipment was back ordered because of delivery delays from overseas which meant having to come in on non-scheduled days to offset the delays to adhere to the general contractor’s installation timeline and in turn jump around the project on almost a daily basis to get things completed in order for all other trades to stay on task and on target.
Ingenuity in the Use of the Right Products and Execution
The products used on the crane were from Sherwin Williams because of their long history and ability to provide great customer service and support. They also had a great variety of coatings that Alpine could use during different seasons given that the project started in the summer and was finished in late fall-early winter. The crew, therefore, was able to use products that had an expansive range of temperature suitability.
To kickoff the onsite work, Alpine power washed all surfaces by means of using minimum 4000 psi and Hot Water Pressure Washers. Once surfaces were cleaned, the crew proceeded to clean the failed and rusted areas by means of SSPC SP-2 and SSPC SP-3 methods. They then applied a spot prime coat to newly prepared areas of DuraPlate 235 Epoxy. Next, the entire crane received a coat of Macropoxy 920 PrePrime followed by one full coat of Hi-Solids Polyurethane. Exterior surfaces, as well as some new components welded and attached to the crane received an overcoat. All work was done by means of brush and rolling. Alpine accessed all areas of the crane by means of scaffold, high reaches, and a crane with a man basket for the high areas.
Industrial Crane Services fabricated a unique trolly system that went underneath the cranes and allowed for underside work to be done in an area that was about 200 foot long x 14 foot wide. The benefit was a considerable amount of time saved during execution of the project.
Alpine Had What it Took to Get the Job and Get it Done
Alpine stood out from other competing bidders because of its ability to provide the right amount of qualified people on the project to help achieve and maintain the tight deadline and project schedule. The company was also selected because of its ability to handle such structures and work around many other people and contractors at the same time. During the job, the crew stood out for its ability to be flexible and adjust its schedule on a daily basis due to overlapping areas of work. Rarely was the team able to perform the full functions of its daily planned work due to other contractors needing to work in the same area. The company also had many more qualifications than the other contractors.
The HOLT Crane client was impressed that Alpine was able to operate efficiently and complete the work with so many other personnel on and around the worksite. They relied on Alpine to help with discussions on coatings and to make informed decisions that allowed the crew to work into colder weather months. Cost saving was significant in the purchase of coatings and materials used for this project. The strategic use of some products allowed the team to extend their usage and effectiveness which resulted in cost savings for the client. Also, by working on weekends, which allowed Alpine to have minimal interruptions, Alpine was able to increase efficiency and productivity.
Alpine Worked Quickly But Never Sacrificed Safety
The project had a tight deadline for completion, and Alpine maintained a consistent crew on site working overtime and weekends to maintain the project schedule and timeline. Working on weekends when other trades were not present allowed the crew to be more efficient and come in under projected budget for the project.
Given the proximity of the cranes to the Delaware River water, the project had many safety concerns going into it because the crew was continuously working over an active river and port. As the project involved work on an elevated structure, Alpine utilized high reach training, fall safety training, and hazardous material training. Safety compliance was observed for working overhead and in conjunction with other trades/welders, cranes on site lifting and moving things, power tool safety and slip, strips & falls. Confined Space training and OSHA 10 were also used on the project.