Drilling in Christchurch

Twice in the last two years, we were booked to come and stabilize cliffs around Christchurch when another earthquake brought more damage and obliged to reassess the plans.

At last, we were called by a large local abseiling company, who has been granted the contract by Fulton Hogan despite no previous experience in drilling. At McCormick reservoirs in Sumner, the initial design, a self-drilling system, didn’t work for 2 weeks until I managed to convince everybody that an open hole strategy had to be deployed.

We’ve seen in Christchurch recovery other occurrences of drilling companies called on abseiling works and abseiling companies specialized in cleaning windows attempting geotechnical jobs. What a waste of time and ratepayer money…

Conclusion:  Always ask the experts and experienced first!

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Photos (c) DAS

Second mesh at Frances Hodgkins!

Access: Even with a fragile barrier at the top of the slope, we are still able to find a way to rig safely.

Drillability: The presence of clay at different depths has obliged us to alternate the use of a down hole hammer and drag bits, to drill top anchors 4m deep embedded in 90mm holes, whereas on most jobs of that kind just a hand-drill and 2m holes should do.