Abseil Access, in collaboration with AUAV and Vertech NZ, recently completed a challenging and complex project in Papua New Guinea. The project involved the stabilization of the Northern bridge abutment of the damaged Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge. The team overcame numerous obstacles to successfully complete the project, earning high praise from the client, Nacap.
Hegigio Gorge Pipeline – Slope Stabilisation
In February 2018, a 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck the Hela Province, Papua New Guinea, causing extensive damage to the Hegigio Gorge Pipeline Bridge. The bridge was originally designed by Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR) and constructed by Clough in 2005. After assessing the damage and evaluating repair options, Santos decided to remove the bridge rather than repair and recertify it. Abseil Access, AUAV, and Vertech NZ were engaged under the Vertech Group banner to complete the necessary services.
A team of 6 from Abseil Access, including Alex Wilmshurst from our Nelson Office who has been coordinating the process from the beginning, camped out on the far side of site due to helicopter issues. This increased the risk of contact with dangerous and venomous snakes and other fauna, which required a robust safety plan.
The project was carried out in two phases. The first phase, which began in September 2022, included Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) of critical structures, a full LiDAR scan of the northern and southern bridge abutments, and vegetation removal via rope access.
- LiDAR scanning, 3D model generation, and general UAV services by AUAV
- NDT of critical tower structures by Vertech NZ
- Slope stabilization of the Northern bridge abutment by Abseil Access
Stephen McMahon, Nacap Project Delivery Lead, praised the Abseil Access team for their outstanding work, stating, “I just wanted to pass on my thanks for the awesome work done by the Abseil Access team over the last 3-4 weeks. There were plenty of challenges thrown at you guys, but you still managed to get a lot of work done in a short period of time. I have received a lot of positive feedback during both Site Visit 1 and 2 from people at the site about the way you guys go about your work.”
The successful completion of the Hegigio Bridge slope stabilization project is a testament to the skill and resilience of all Vertech Group Teams, who expertly navigated a complex and demanding environment. With their unwavering commitment to safety, professionalism, and excellence, the team delivered outstanding results for Nacap.