02 October 2006

Haulbowline Site Remediation Update - October 2006

Cork County Council 2/10/06

The last major structure remaining on the steelworks site, the former furnace building, was demolished on September 14th. The contractor had fastened anchor chains at crane-rail level on the east side and pre-weakened the building by hinge-cutting the stanchions on both east and west sides. The chains were connected by wire ropes to heavy excavators which then pulled the building over in an easterly direction.

As the building collapsed there was a bellows effect which blew out the dust on the roof trusses. This was the one area of the buildings which had not been vacuum-cleaned due to difficulty of access and the risk of working at height. Due to choice of favourable wind conditions, the dust cloud dispersed to the south of Haulbowline. One of the air quality monitors installed in the Naval Base recorded a temporary PM-10 level of 290 micrograms per cubic metre, but the daily average for September 14th (34mcg/cu.m.) was well below the guideline of 50mcg/cu.m.

The contractor is now cutting up the building for scrap, including the two gantry cranes which came down with the building. It is expected that a shipment of scrap metal will be followed by a shipment of dust and refractory which will be exported to hazardous waste landfill on the continent. This will free up the remaining warehouses for demolition, and the site will be cleared of remaining metallics. A tentative date for the completion of the steelwork demolition contract is mid-November.

A number of concrete and masonry structures will remain above ground, and it is intended that these will be demolished in the near future.