When a shutdown was scheduled at a major LNG plant, Coates Hire supported the maintenance project.
In large-scale industrial plants, maintenance shutdowns are planned years in advance. But some are on short-notice because an issue is identified.
At Barrow Island, Western Australia, Coates Hire was called-upon by Chevron Australia to support such a shutdown earlier this year.
“Chevron call it a ‘Pit Stop’ says Iain Campbell, Coates Hire Industrial Services Manager - West. “The owners wanted to check and remediate some issues on Train 2 at their LNG plant.”
The pit stop shutdown was estimated at 150,000 man-hours and ran for 16 days. Campbell says that because Coates Hire has a five-year supply contract with the Chevron Australia maintenance group, the company supplied tools and equipment to the project.
“We have a full-time site manager on-site and we supplied an additional tool store as well as controllers and mechanics for the duration of the pit stop event,” says Campbell. “We also supplied compressors, generators, elevated work platforms, general tools, hand-tools and specialised torque-bolting equipment.”
Coates Hire maintains a 24/7 branch and toolstore on Barrow Island which oversees the hire of mobile plant and tools and equipment, and includes ‘test and tagging’ of equipment and calibration work that has to be undertaken on torque, electrical and electrical-test equipment.
“The shutdown is a tightly-managed event and it’s our job to ensure the equipment is safe, reliable and fit for purpose.”
While Coates Hire provided industry-leading equipment and on-site support, Campbell says one of the crucial components for Chevron Australia - and all industrial services clients - is Coates Hire’s management systems.
“We use our CHASE system at all of our shutdowns. We’ve refined it over the years so we can track equipment that goes out of the tool stores - we track the tool, the person who has it, the company they’re with and the work-group they’re operating in. And it’s checked when it comes back to us.”
Coates Hire’s management and support helps shutdown customers keep within budget.
“CHASE runs a traffic light system,” says Campbell. “We know when a tool is supposed to be back in the store, and it’s not here. We can alert the person and get it back. Managing the on- and off-hire process can save the customer a lot of money.”
He says the CHASE system can also attribute losses and damage to a certain contracting company, allowing Chevron to offset their costs to the parties who caused the damage or the loss.
The Coates Hire management systems are so effective that in the case of Chevron Australia, Coates Hire brings all tools and equipment used in the shutdown on to its CHASE system.
“We also managed the customer’s equipment, which at Barrow Island included a large fleet of lighting towers, and we managed all of the other contractor’s tools and equipment.”
Campbell says industrial services is a growth business for Coates Hire, as Australia continues to expand its resources and energy infrastructure.
Annual maintenance expenditure in Australia's resources industry is forecast to swell to $10 billion within five years. BIS Oxford Economics
says the surge in spending is the equivalent of the next mining boom.”
Campbell says by the end of 2018 there’ll be 21 LNG trains in operation within Australia and there’ll be planned shutdowns on each train at least every four years.
“This phase will be a dominant feature of the industry for the next 30 to 50 years, broadly equivalent to the value of the recent capital project phase. Every owner will want the work done effectively, quickly, safely and within budget. Coates Hire - with its excellent equipment, people and technology - is well-positioned for this opportunity.”
BIS Oxford Economics, 2017. ‘Mining in Australia 2017-2032’