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Mon May 17 2021

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Queensferry Crossing cranes come down

16 Jun 17 With construction of the £1.3bn Queensferry Crossing near to completion, the tower cranes have come down.

Bernhard Hunter derigs one of the three tower cranes. (Photo courtesy of Transport Scotland.)
Bernhard Hunter derigs one of the three tower cranes. (Photo courtesy of Transport Scotland.)

The contract to dismantle the three Liebherr 630 EC-H 40 tower cranes, which were used to build the three 207-metre high support towers, went to Edinburgh-based Bernard Hunter.

Bernard Hunter used a 500-tonne class Liebherr LTM1500-8.1 mobile crane with a 35 metre fixed fly jib to remove the tower cranes’ tie bars from the bridge structure. The mobile crane was lifting five tonnes at a 57 metre radius and a 90 metre hook height. The LTM crane then went on to remove the tower cranes’ jib sections, head, cabin and slew assembly. Alongside the LTM 1500-8.1, a 300-tonne LTM 1300-6.1 mobile crane was used to remove the tower cranes’ counter jib, hoist unit frame and counterweight ballast blocks. This crane was lifting 22.2 tonnes at a 22 metre radius and a hook height of 55 metre.

“As an Edinburgh-based company we were delighted and proud to win this prestigious contract,” said chairman Jim Rafferty.

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Bernard Hunter was awarded the crane dismantling by Forth Crossing Bridge Constructors (FCBC), the main contracting consortium that has built the bridge. FCBC comprises Hochtief, Dragados, American Bridge and Morrison Construction (Galliford Try). It has a £790m construction contract.

The new 2.7 km long bridge will be the world’s longest cable stayed bridge with three towers and will sit alongside the existing Forth Road Bridge across Scotland’s Forth Estuary.

June 2017 was the initial contract completion date but the team had been working toward a December 2016 opening before bad weather repeatedly intervened. The last of the 122 deck sections was finally lifted in February. The bridge is now expected to open to traffic at the end of August.

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