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Crane Hire rescues Muriwai Lifeguard tower

3 October 2005

New Zealand Crane Hire rescues Muriwai Lifeguard tower off dunes

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Auckland, 29 September, 2005. The Muriwai Lifeguard Service tower was today rescued off the rugged Auckland west coast beach by New Zealand Crane Hire after surf and wind had eroded the dunes it was built on.

The 220 tonne Grove crane, the biggest in New Zealand Crane Hire’s fleet, swung the tower around over the dunes into the carpark of the Muriwai Lifeguard Service where it will sit temporarily while decisions are made on a permanent position.

The tower was opened only nine years ago but the dunes have eroded about 40 metres since then and it was in danger of toppling off its pole foundations onto the beach below.

The previous Muriwai Lifeguard Service tower also had to be moved because of erosion. It was lifted by helicopter and was spectacularly ditched into the sea when it became too heavy for the helicopter. The Lifeguard Service wanted to make sure this lift would be successful.

New Zealand Crane Hire operations manager Garry Somers said the crane was parked in behind the dunes and reached out 44 metres to lift the tower. The surf club tower weight was estimated at five tonnes but the 220 tonne crane was required because of the long reach to the tower from the nearest accessible ground.

(Note: A 220 tonne crane can lift 220 tonnes in a vertical lift from the ground next to the crane. As cranes reach out further and further the amount they can lift reduces and they are counterweighted with steel weights so they don't tip over. The required counterweight is calculated based on the required reach of the crane boom for the lift and the weight to be lifted.)

The crane set up in a tight position behind the Muriwai Lifeguard Service clubhouse at about 8am, the tower was lifted at about 10.30am after Lifeguard Service members chain-sawed through the pole foundations and New Zealand Crane Hire was all packed up by about 12 noon.


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