Common Tower Crane Anti-Collision Systems Mandatory
For the largest urban renewal and regeneration development in Paris, to ensure safety between the high density of tower cranes that will eventually be used by different contractors, the engineering consultants, CICAD, are insisting that all be fitted with SMIE anti-collision and zoning systems to ensue total compatibility.
To meet requirements, SMIE have had to upgrade the software on its AC243 systems to enable up to 14 cranes to work on a single network. Even then, such is the density of cranes that will eventually be on site, that two or more networks will be required. This inevitably means that some cranes will have dual installations because they work across different networks.
Just 7 km west of the centre of Paris, on the banks of the river Seine, has been derelict for over 15 years. Now a 37.5 ha area at the Rives de Billancourt will be developed with residential, commercial, retail, entertainment and other public centres. At the heart will be a 7 ha park. Also part of the development is the 11.5 ha Ile Seguin, the site of the original Renault plant.
The scale of the project is such that it will be a ‘city within a city'. Boulogne-Billancourt already has over 12,500 enterprises, 1 million sq m of office space and provides employment for over 80,000 people. The latest development will provide an additional 842,000 sq. m of housing, 247,000 m² of offices and 175,000 m² of shops, hotels and other facilities. There will also be new metro lines, and renovated bridges to facilitate the movement of people.
A complication for the developers is that different contractors will be working on different projects. The principal contractors, Vinci, Icade Capri and Mexity working alongside a public consortium, have10 plots under development with 25 tower cranes.
Safety Is First Consideration
With so much activity in progress at the same time, logistics management is a major problem and all traffic is routed through the site and monitored in and out. The major consideration for CICAD is site safety. Although anti-collision systems are mandatory on sites throughout France where there is more than one tower crane on a site, CICAD insisted that the many different cranes should all be able to work to one safety monitoring system.
Christophe Picard, consulting engineer explained “The only way we could ensure that all tower cranes on the development could work safely, without collision or entering unauthorized zones, was by insisting on a common solution. We have entered into an agreement with SMIE, whereby the AC243 anti-collision system will be required to be fitted and maintained by SMIE engineers on all tower cranes. SMIE was chosen because of their expertise and proven ability to work with all types and makes of tower crane.
To ensure that one contractor is not inconvenienced by an adjacent contractor we are also insisting that the tower cranes are all fully operational between 7.00 and 20.00.”
Responsible for the SMIE installations, Lionel Loisy says, “We have had to work very closely with CICAD and develop software for the SMIE systems to meet their requirements. Because of the risk of interference, they asked that SMIE maximize the number of cranes on a single network. So we have upgraded the system to increase wireless integration from 9 to 14 cranes on a single network. “The most complicated area is where two cranes overlap networks. These will have to be fitted with two systems – the additional cost being shared by all contractors.”
CICAD will also record all crane operations at its head office to enable faster investigation in the event of any accidents.