e-mosty September 2017: Mersey Gateway Bridge. Arenales Bridge. Mersey Gateway Bridge. Arenales Bridge. BLWT. - Page 32

5. SAFETY Once all of the swings were installed, the scaffolding was disassembled and the decking planks were installed to the wooden nailers (see Figure 12 below. Local safety standards are extremely unsophisticated in remote, isolated communities like Arenales. Instilling a culture of safety with unskilled volunteer labor in this environment can at times seem a nearly unsurmountable task. The Arenales Suspension Bridge team tackled the challenge with resolve. With an average of 6 community volunteer workers on site each day, the project closed with 1008 days of local labor, 880 days of skilled labor, and not a single safety incident beyond minor cuts and bruises. The B2P, Kiewit, and KPFF teams modeled safe practice for local community members, supplying them with necessary PPE such as hard hats, gloves and glasses, leading safety discussions each morning, and training community members on the appropriate use of fall protection when working at heights. Figure 12: Volunteers from Kiewit and KPFF, along with Bridges to Prosperity staff and community members, install walkway decking boards Tie cables to connect the walkway to the wind guy cables were cut to length and attached to the wind guy cables at predetermined locations. As the walkway was being completed, a second work team followed on the completed section of the deck, attaching the tie cables to the appropriate crossbeams. Once the decking was finished, the wind guy cables were tensioned. Finally, handrail cables and fencing were installed to complete the bridge structure (see Figure 13). Figure 14: Volunteers from Kiewit and KPFF lead an all-hands meeting at the start of the day to review tasks and assess safety risks The size of the Arenales Bridge presented unique safety challenges. The anchor reinforcement cages weighed nearly a ton, and had to be moved using a customized cable and pulley system to avoid manually dropping them into place. Excavations for foundations were dug nearly 2 meters deep, so they were benched for safety, a practice not common locally. Figure 13: Walkway and guy wire installation is complete, and fencing is installed The dynamics of the site layered on another unique set of challenges. The new bridge was being constructed over where the existing crossing still stood, which acted as a main thoroughfare for the Arenales community to get to essential services. To maintain the community’s access throughout construction, the team rerouted that thoroughfare multiple times. All community labor was directed to a single intake point, where they could ensure they were appropriately trained and outfitted before entering the site. Similarly, the team worked with local volunteers to complete a Hazard Analysis for every operation identifying hazards and how to mitigate them. 3/2017