Scaffolding and access specialist Harsco Infrastructure (SGB) is providing crucial temporary weather protection to contractors carrying out roof repair work at London Gatwick Airport. Main contractor ROK have just renewed a £130 million, five-year framework agreement with BAA and are currently working on Phases 8 and 9 of a major refurbishment project at London Gatwick South Terminal.

As an established member of ROK’s supply chain, Harsco Infrastructure has provided access and roofing services on all seven previous phases of the ongoing maintenance contract. Each phase has been tendered separately and Harsco Infrastructure has won each subcontract based on the strength of previous performance and their reputation for quality and safety.

Steve Papworth, Project Manager at ROK, comments: “Harsco Infrastructure has a long track record at the airport going back many years and involving a wide range of access solutions for ROK and other main contractors. Their experience at London Gatwick, and the fact that Harsco Infrastructure already had a presence on site, meant they could respond quickly and with minimum disruption”.

To provide weather protection and create an enclosed working area for ROK’s operatives during the repair work, Harsco Infrastructure has supplied a temporary roofing system on 3.5m CUPLOK® scaffolding props over one half of the roof. The area covered is 26m in length and spans 37m. CUPLOK props and roofing beams were also used on the other half of the roof using fabric and profiled steel sheeting to provide weather protection.

Harsco Infrastructure’s roofing system is based on an aluminium beam designed for temporary roof structures and as a structural beam for scaffolding applications. Designed for faster and safer erection than most existing roofing systems, it is a lightweight, fully modular system that is simple to assemble. All the components of the system are small and light enough to be handled manually by no more than two people.

Despite its light weight, the aluminium roof beams are strong enough to cover clear spans of up to 40m without any additional support. The system incorporates flexible PVC sheeting which slides into Keder tracking slots in the aluminium frame to provide a secure, seamless protective covering. Sections can be built at ground level and craned into position or assembled in-situ and rolled into position. Individual units can be dismantled or removed to provide temporary access.

In addition to the roofing system and CUPLOK® deployed on the current phases of the project, Harsco Infrastructure has also supplied a temporary retail hoist to allow deliveries to the shops located in the South Terminal during refurbishment of the main goods lift serving the building.

Phase 8 of the project started during August 2008 and is now completed; Phase 9 will continue until February/March 09.