As part of their lead replacement scheme to meet the future standard of 10μg/l, Essex & Suffolk Water, now Northumbrian Water, adopted the KOBUS Pipe Puller to carry out works across their south east Essex service area. To train their team of operators, a series of pipes were chosen to demonstrate multiple service pipe replacements.
Works were carried out across three days in a suburban area of Southend-on-Sea, replacing ½” lead pipes. All 11 pipes were cross-road (long-side) and were between 9 and 10 metres in length.
Under normal circumstances, Essex & Suffolk would undertake this work via open-cut trenching. This approach requires extensive local authority liaison, generates significant traffic management costs, and often produces local traffic congestion. Essex & Suffolk Water had bought the KOBUS Pipe Puller to reduce or eliminate these issues and to produce only minimal excavations with the highway remaining open throughout the period of the works.
Of the 11 pipes chosen for replacement, 10 were successfully replaced, with an average pull time of 303 seconds. The average time from connection cut to ready for reconnection was 53 minutes.
Failure to remove one pipe was due to the pipe being severely damaged underground which meant the cable could not be inserted into the pipe.
Across the 4 day whilst undertaking training, the pulls were performed by a 3 man team from excavating the access holes, removing spoil, replacing the existing pipe, reconnecting the supply and leaving time for the the subcontractor team to complete the reinstatement to the required standard.