The Fibrelite 90 tonne load rated lightweight trench covers in position on the quayside
The Fibrelite 90 tonne load rated lightweight trench covers in position on the quayside

Fibrelite was tasked with providing a retrofit 90 tonne load rated lightweight cover that could withstand the rigours and working environment of an extremely busy commercial port.

The covers had to be F900 load rated, provide easy and safe access, be retrofitted into the existing frames and also provide security to prevent unauthorised access.

The initial approach came from the port’s maintenance team who were exploring alternative replacement options for the extremely heavy and corroding steel covers that required dedicated lifting equipment, which incurred substantial financial costs with equipment, manpower and time, every time fresh water was transferred to the ship.

Costly and time consuming operation of removing the previously installed covers

The replacement covers that Fibrelite supplied were load rated to F900 and colour coded yellow to denote fresh drinking water supply. The regional water authority had previously specified that the covers must be secured to prevent unauthorised access so Fibrelite provided a bolt down version so that the trench covers could be secured to the existing frame.

Operator removing the Fibrelite securing system
Simple and safe removal using the Fibrelite lifting handles
Simple and safe removal using the Fibrelite lifting handles

The Fibrelite trench covers were designed to fit directly into the existing frame, which eliminated any break out cost and greatly reduced the installation costs. The replacement trench covers are easily and safely removed and replaced by using the Fibrelite lifting handles (FL7).

Previously both of the extremely heavy steel covers had to be removed to expose the isolation valve for the drinking water supply. Now only one Fibrelite trench cover needs to be removed

One of the port’s work inspectors was quoted as saying “You will be pleased to hear that the works was completed yesterday and going forward will prove to be a huge improvement to our delivery of water to vessels”.

The Fibrelite lightweight composite trench covers can be used for a multitude of applications: from ports and dockyards, industrial facilities, airports, HGV loading areas.

The Benefits of Using Fibrelite’s Trench Covers

  • Lightweight reducing lifting and handling issues: The covers are easily removed by a two person lift, even at F900 load rating
  • Bespoke covers available: Covers can be designed to retrofit into existing frames, which prevents breaking concrete and substantially reducing installation costs
  • Improved efficiency and productivity: Quick removal and no expensive lifting apparatus required, just the ergonomically designed Fibrelite lifting handle
  • Corrosion resistant
  • Customised designs: Covers are available in different colours, which will not fade
  • Composite is lightweight, strong and unlike concrete will not crumble or crack
  • Guaranteed structural performance: All covers are tested to EN124 D400 load rating (F900 is tested to BS EN 124, Class F900 using the Air BP test footprint)