Articles & Case Studies

MCA Hire and Thermofuse Pipelines in United Utilities Repair Programme

Posted: Wednesday 26th September 2012

MCA Hire, Thermofuse Pipelines, Denholm Pipecare and Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Ltd are helping to maintain an 80km stretch of the Vyrnwy Large Diameter Trunk Main (LDTM) for United Utilities.

The team will be working to repair three existing LTDM’s that run from the water treatment works in Oswestry to the Prescot Water treatment works near Liverpool. LTDM number 3 is bitumen lined steel that will be pressure jetted. Lines 1 and 2 of the LTDM are unlined cast iron and will be refurbished with polyethylene (PE) using the specialist technique of swage lining, a process applied by Denholme Pipecare.

The swage lining technique is where butt welded strings of a liner are drawn through a specialist reducing dye to reduce the overall diameter of the PE lining and allow insertion into the host cast iron main.

Over a period of time the PE’s elasticity will allow the PE lining to revert to its original diameter, creating a tight fit and maximising the bore of the newly lined cast iron main. The specialist operation of Butt Fusion welding of the large diameter liner is being carried out by Thermosfuse pipelines.

MCA, part of Drain Center, has been involved with the Vyrnwy project when trials first started 4 years ago. It provided a McElroy 1648 specialist large diameter butt fusion machine, and as the project developed, MCA imported an additional brand new McElroy 1648 welding machine from America to enhance on the job performance, which is due to make its first UK site appearance next week.

Efficiency on site is already high. United Utilities set the team a target of eight welds per day, but the team from Thermofuse Pipelines sometimes find themselves completing ten or 11 welds in a day.

Paul Hurst, project manager Thermofuse Pipelines said: “Our specially trained operatives ensure projects are delivered on time! We were a natural choice for this project because we’ve been in the business for 17 years. We boast long term relationships with suppliers, with which we have negotiated advantageous rates, and these cost savings are passed onto our customers.”

Ashley Bentley, Regional Operations Manager MCA Hire said: “We pride ourselves on our customer service and we wanted to provide the best possible equipment for this project, which is why we took the decision to buy an additional brand new McElroy 1648 Butt Fusion machine in support of this long term project.

“We’re delighted to be working with Thermofuse. It’s a long standing relationship we really value, and together we’re able to achieve great things for our customers.”

Paul Hurst added: “We’ve worked with MCA Hire for 17 years now and we’ve built up a solid relationship with lots of trust on either side. The machines we hire are good value and the backup and repair service is excellent.”

The maintenance and repair work on the pipe lines is part of United Utilities’ 14 year cleaning and cleaning and maintenance programme to the Vyrnwy LDTM to improve water quality.

The Vyrnwy LDTM consists of three parallel pipelines with a total length of around 240km

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