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Weekend Wonder-Shifts transform delivery of joint replacement schemes

A team from Jackson have transformed the delivery of multi-element joint replacement schemes by introducing Weekend Wonder-Shifts which fast-track the programme and deliver the schemes for 30% of their original predicted cost.

Weekend Wonder-Shifts run from 10pm on Friday night to 5am on Monday morning enabling teams to work round the clock to for 55 hours straight. As anyone who works on the SRN will know, working windows pose a significant challenge for projects as a significant amount of time is lost each shift to site mobilisation and demobilisation.

Working alongside joint suppliers Maurer, the team has successfully carried out two joint replacement schemes on the north and southbound slip roads of the M3/M25 interchange using Weekend Wonder-Shifts, saving approximately three months on each project programme, and saving £500,000 each joint.

A conventional joint replacement scheme would ordinarily be carried out over a period of three months, using six longer Saturday night shifts which run from 8pm to 8am on Sunday, and then normal weeknight shifts, which run from 10pm to 5am, in between.

The problem with using this shift pattern on joint replacement schemes is that in order to access the joint, temporary ramps which enable traffic to flow during the day, have to be removed and replaced during each shift. This, coupled with the traffic management installation and removal, means 2.5 hours on each 7 hour weeknight shift is lost to mobilisation and demobilisation, leaving only 4.5 hours for the team to get to work on the joint itself. Using weekend Wonder-Shifts, the need for several mobilisations is completely removed.

Jackson’s Framework Manager Ryan Smith explains: “Productivity during the Weekend Wonder-Shifts is exceptionally high as they give us the opportunity to get the bulk of the work done in one go. We split the weekend into six separate shifts, but without having to mobilise the site several times over, we’re effectively cramming almost 12 standard weeknight shifts into one.”

Not all areas of the M25 network lend themselves to a full Wonder-shift closure due to diversion routes, and a great deal of planning is required to ensure they run smoothly, but where they are possible, this proven method should be considered as a first option less time spent out on the network means vastly reduced exposure for our workforce, far less disruption for Highways England customers, and greatly reduced project costs.