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Delivering in a Disaster


When a custom solution was required in a tight timeframe, Humes rose to the challenge.

The 2011 Christchurch earthquake saw severe damage being done to the city’s sewerage system. To make matters worse, the intense tectonic movements caused the natural underground springs feeding into the sewers to shift, requiring fundamental alterations to ensure Christchurch’s sewers continued to function.

Aggressive environment

McConnell-Dowell designed a new trunk sewer to divert flow from the existing Rossall Street sewer to a new gravity sewer on Fendalton Road. This presented a challenge to the project, as flow from Rossall Street contained aggressive industrial chemicals. That’s where Humes came in – designing and manufacturing a unique, customised 825 diameter concrete pipe with 25mm sacrificial wall and 100 year life span, that could handle the chemical environment and fell within budget.

Humes saves time

McConnell Dowell Project Engineer Luke Hazlett was impressed with the way Humes responded to their unusual design requests. “Humes played an extremely important part in the supply of the concrete pipeline”, said Luke. “The pipe needed to be fabricated especially for the job due to the non-standard pipe diameter and wall thickness specified by the Engineer. The pipe was not only delivered on time, but it had all the accompanying Quality Assurance documents.”

An important part of this project was removing ‘pinch points’, ensuring the process ran smoothly and efficiently from end to end. Humes staff and technical experts, were on the ground on a daily basis to solve any issues that arose – a crucial service in such a unique project. In addition, the team worked with their freight partners to co-ordinate out-of-hours delivery, ensuring that product was on-site as soon as it was needed.

After-sales serviced

Once the custom pipe was installed, the Humes team stayed engaged with the project to provide any additional services. “The after sales service that we received from Humes was to an extremely high standard” says Luke Hazlett. “I could make a phone call to Matt Bone (Humes Sales Representative) and he would always make himself available to address any extra fittings or parts that we required”.

“We could rely on Matt to deliver any technical queries we had in relation to the installation of the concrete pipe and also the Ductile Iron pipe that was supplied for the river crossings.”

“We learnt a lot from this experience” says Matthew Bone. “Our ability to custom manufacture with flexible supply capabilities, our dedicated team on the ground planning and working alongside our partners, we have shown Humes can deliver in a disaster.”



Where & when:

January 2013-January 2014, Christchurch

Featured Products:

26 February 2018