Electrical, control and instrumentation engineers and constructors Wade Walker, a wholly owned subsidiary of Murray & Roberts, is in the execution phase of a multimillion US dollar electrical and instrumentation project in the eastern region of Ghana.

The scope of Wade Walker’s contract, awarded on a lump sum basis, includes all electrical and instrumentation work required, and has been divided into two portions: early works and construction power, scheduled for completion in November 2012; and the process plant, planned for completion by April 2013.

“The electrical and instrumentation activities include all works associated with mine overhead power distribution lines, cabling, cable terminations, cable racking supports, instrumentation, electrical equipment, electrical field devices, lighting and small power, earthing and lightning protection, fire detection and suppression trenching and provision of testing and commissioning support,” Gordon Sneddon, projects director for Wade Walker, says.

“This is an extensive project involving quantities such as 235 km of cabling, 75 km of small power and lighting cabling, a 19 km overhead power line, 24 km of cable racking supports, as well as 320 electrical field devices. There are also 3 200 lighting, small power and earthing installations.”

Since the Wade Walker team arrived on-site in January 2012, there have been zero Lost Time Injuries and this outstanding safety performance is attributed to a sustained and intense focus on safe behaviours, underpinned by working closely with the client and the Murray & Roberts safety philosophy: Stop.Think.Act.24/7. This approach emphasises the importance of taking action to correct unsafe conditions and behaviour, as well as recognising positive behaviour, while “24/7” highlights the need to be safety-aware at all times, both at work and after hours.

“The excellent safety record being achieved on this project is an indicator of good housekeeping in general, including good behaviours and good morale among our workforce, predominantly drawn from local communities” Tim Wakefield, Wade Walker managing director, comments: “The nature of what we do allows us to operate with small teams under high supervision and this also facilitates excellent communication and training until local recruits buy in to our standards and values”

Wade Walker has a robust management team on-site, including a full-time project manager, human resources, industrial relations, quality control, planning and quantity surveying personnel permanently deployed at the mine site. Wherever possible, artisan and semi-skilled local labour is being recruited and trained to carry out cable rack installations and cable terminations.

Wade Walker first established a presence in Ghana in 2004 when it set up a stage post in Accra and today it is establishing with the greater Murray & Roberts group a fully-fledged office supporting all of the Murray & Roberts companies serving the West African market, to be manned by Ghanaian residents with minimal South African expat staffing.


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