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Decommissioning begins at UK petrochemical sites

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

RVA Group has been contracted by SABIC to oversee the decommissioning, demolition and dismantling of 10 redundant plants at its North Tees and Wilton sites in the UK.

The programme, which is expected to be completed in 2020, will involve the demolition of a jetty, which will begin at the end of July and be cleared in eight weeks. Continued decommissioning support is being provided for a tank farm complex and RVA is also finalising the contractor selection process for the demolition of two aromatics plants, with a proposed mobilisation date of January 2018.

Elsewhere in Wilton, the 48-week demolition of SABIC’s Olefins 5 Furnaces and neighbouring Butadiene 2 facility is already in progress and expected to be completed by spring 2018 and the close of 2017, respectively.

SABIC’s Site Director (acting), Daren Smith, said: “With the two-year upgrade of our cracker plant now complete, this current multi-million pound clean-up signals the latest chapter in the creation of safe, efficient and state-of-the-art facilities that are fit for the future.”

RVA’s Managing Director, Richard Vann, said: “The portfolio of assets being cleared as part of this extensive programme is vast […] We’re talking a range of world-scale chemical plants made up of complex structures, surrounded by live plant, in a multi-user operational site. This is an inherently demanding project but unparalleled planning has been invested to prepare for this phase of works.”

RVA was first appointed by SABIC in 2011 to review all redundant assets on the two sites. Drones were deployed for selected areas to inspect the condition of the various structures, before a rigorous, scheduled decommissioning strategy was developed to meet the operational, isolation and budgetary needs of the client.

RVA was appointed via competitive tender to act as the decommissioning consultant, project management resource and CDM Principal Designer, for this latest phase of the project. Six RVA personnel have a full-time presence on the two sites, with visiting roles from three additional senior managers. The collaborative assignment is also being carried out in conjunction with SABIC’s own project management team, plus surveyors, dismantling and demolition contractors who are being independently appointed via tender for each individual phase of work.

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