Engineering solutions provider GAST has announced that project execution company Basil Read terminated its Medupi Power Station geosynthetic contract, despite having already completed more than 95% of a R83 million contract.Simultaneously, Basil Read called upon GAST’s R8,2 million performance bond. Power utility Eskom awarded the R516 million Medupi infrastructure project to Basil Read, the scope of work which included the construction of permanent access and service roads to the ash dump area, dump earthworks, the initial-platform and wearing course for stacking, the bulk earthworks and geosynthetics for the various coal stock yards, ash dump and dams. Basil Read subsequently approached GAST to assist in the supply and installation of one of the largest geosynthetic projects in the Southern Hemisphere, which included: • 472 500m² of 1,5mm HDPE Dual Textured geomembranes, • 78 400m² of 1,5mm HDPE Smooth geomembranes, • 358 761m² of 2,0mm HDPE Smooth geomembranes, • 325 861m² of geosynthetic clay liners, • 598 400m² of class 2 separation geotextiles,
• 67 360m² of 1000g protection geotextiles,• 62 000m² of geocells, • 34 850m²of geogrids, • 32 200m² of cuspated sheets, and • 358 761m² of 350g geotextiles. With over 50 years’ experience and more than 12 000 projects completed with various clients, GAST’s management has taken the decision to withdraw from the Medupi project due to a variety of difficulties experienced with Basil Read, which have impacted GAST’s ability to deliver. This decision was taken due to serious constraints and other extenuating circumstances experienced with construction group Basil Read. “It is unfortunate that GAST has had to withdraw from the project, considering the large amount of financial input and hours already spent working on site by GAST. However, with 6 months unpaid certificates with as little as R300 000 remaining of our contract, our client, Basil Read, has subsequently drawn our R8.2 million performance bond, which left us with no alternative but to walk away. “Despite this, we feel confident that our losses and damages can be recovered through the judicial system. We remain proud to have been involved with the Medupi Power Station project, providing some of the highest quality work and logistical success ever seen in the geosynthetics industry in Africa,” concluded Jean Gonsalves, spokesperson for GAST. GAST continues to work with Eskom on various other projects, such as the Kusile and Hendrina Power Stations and is committed to continue providing the renowned dedication to excellent service and high quality products that the company is known for.