Submarine Ship Lift

The Ship Lift at BAE Systems Submarines in Barrow-in-Furness is crucial to the manoeuvring of submarines in and out of the dock. Due to the environmental conditions where the lift is located; the corrosion of the steel substrate and the weakening of the lift was of grave concern to the operators. Taziker was contracted to steam clean the structure to remove years of built up grease, grit blast and paint the structure over three summers.

Added Value

We had an unusual issue which meant that work needed to be carefully planned in set time windows. The constantly changing level of the dock water results in the lower platform level of the scaffolding being periodically submerged. It also means that the bottom flanges of the 54 beams are also submerged when levels rise. We ensured that our programme took this into account and to ensure that these areas were blast cleaned and painted in time to dry before the tides covered the area.

Learning and Innovation

The site is located adjacent to the Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and Special Site of Scientific Interest (SSSI) areas within Walney Channel and located directly above the dock water. This made it even more important to ensure that we contained the dust and debris created during our works. We erected a tent over the working area to ensure that dust didn’t escape into the surrounding environment or areas which have been previously treated.

May 2005 - Jun 2007

The scope of the works included:

  • Scaffolding of the subterranean lift to a level 30cm above the low water mark
  • Programme management, working with the tides to access exposed areas
  • Encapsulation of the lift to prevent contamination of the dock and the mechanical equipment
  • Steam cleaning of substrate to remove grease and salt deposits
  • Grit Blasting of the dilapidated paint system followed by the application of 60,000 litres of glassflake epoxy paint

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