Case Studies, Industry News

500th wind turbine construction for BMS Heavy Cranes Australia

BMS Heavy Cranes has been operating locally for 5 years. With a specialised fleet of heavy lift cranes, the business has been focused on a number of key industry sectors including the renewable energy market, particularly the construction and maintenance of wind farms.

2022 will see BMS Heavy Cranes construct its 500th wind turbine. Anders Egdal, Managing Director of BMS Heavy Cranes APAC provides insights into both the global and local BMS organisations.

BMS A/S, the parent company of BMS Heavy Cranes, was founded in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1953 as a state-owned construction and machinery company. BMS Heavy Cranes A/S started in 2011, and today the company consists of approximately 500 permanent and committed employees spread over more than 20 foreign entities operating across the globe.

In 2004, the Enggaard family, who had successfully built another Danish crane company, purchased 50% of BMS from the state and by 2007 the acquisition was completed, providing the family with 100% ownership. To this day, the business is wholly owned by the Enggaard family. In 2021 BMS rose to be the 6th largest crane company in the world according to the international Crane Index.

“BMS Heavy Cranes Australia was established in 2017 as a result of the region’s ever expanding renewable energy market. In 2022 we are due to erect our 500th wind turbine locally, demonstrating our commitment to being the leading crane supplier to the Australian wind energy market.

“We have completed projects in Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria with projects beginning in Queensland and New South Wales. Our depot is based in Ballarat, Victoria but we mobilise our resources to wherever the cranes are required. The BMS Heavy Cranes Head Office in Melbourne, manages the APAC region which includes Asia and New Zealand, as well as Australia,” said Egdal.

“BMS consistently goes above and beyond, providing an ‘all inclusive’ service to our clients. Our Australian team has been tailored to include experts in project management and execution, planning and scheduling, engineering and heavy lift design as well as health, safety and quality management.

“Our people and their inherit skills, allow us to provide clear insights r our clients on the proposed solutions and throughout the progress of a project. Our long-term relationships and record of return customers, demonstrates a high level of customer satisfaction which we strive locally and globally,” he said.

Locally, BMS Heavy Cranes is predominantly known for its capabilities within the renewable energy sector. But in Denmark and throughout Europe, BMS clients are more diverse across the heavy lift sector. BMS is recognised as a heavy lift specialist in civil construction, oil and gas and both onshore and offshore windfarms. Partnering with turbine manufacturers to provide cranage for the next generation of turbines, constantly lifting heavier prototypes to higher heights.

“Locally, we are making a concerted effort to diversify, by bringing our heavy lift expertise to more civil construction projects. This was recently demonstrated with our involvement in the $196 million Ovingham Level Crossing Removal project in Adelaide,” said Egdal.

Adelaide’s Ovingham Level Crossing Removal Project is a perfect example of a successful partnership between a local crane company and international heavy lift specialists to deliver the optimal solution for the end client, explains BMS Heavy Cranes Construction Engineer, Liam Edwards

For two months through the 2021-2022 summer, BMS Heavy Cranes partnered with Adelaide’s Crane Services to install the main steel girders on Adelaide’s Ovingham Level Crossing Removal Project.

The partnership between the two companies provided an optimal, cost effective and efficient lifting solution for the PTP Alliance, led by McConnell Dowell and South Australia’s Department of Infrastructure and Transport.

The site constraints included rail occupation windows, tight setup areas and a requirement for a fast crane relocation over rail.

BMS Heavy Cranes deployed its Liebherr LG 1750 SX on 56m of SL22 main boom with 250t counterweight on the SP extension and this proved to be the ideal machine for the project. This configuration provided a capacity of 130t at 30m radius without the need for a superlift tray. The mobile crane style carrier of the machine also benefitted the tight setup area as the team was able to pile foundations beneath the outrigger feet on the roadside for the second setup, reducing the need for large steel mats to disperse the load of the crane. The crane was fully mobilised to site and ready to lift in two days with the BMS crew demonstrating their well-trained commitment to safety when working at heights on a Tier One site.

The project demonstrated a successful collaboration between a local crane supplier and a global heavy lift company to provide the optimal solution to the end client. The collaboration enabled Crane Services to take on the full scope of work for the erection of the steel girders and associated temporary and permanent works and manage the project.  With BMS providing their crane and crew along with engineering expertise to ensure the project was a success and providing the client with a complete turnkey operation.

BMS Heavy Crane has a dedicated engineering team based in Melbourne which services the APAC region. This team is supported by the global engineering department in Denmark says Edwards.

“Our global engineering department is a world leader in innovative heavy lift solutions. When you are dealing with big cranes, not all of the answers can be found in the manual or the software. For this reason, BMS works closely with the technical departments of our crane manufacturers to seek approval for non-standard configurations as well as provide feedback for future improvements. These relationships give us the capability to think outside the square and provide tailored engineering solutions,” he said.

Worldwide, BMS has a fleet of over 600 cranes. This includes mobile all terrain cranes with capacities up to the Liebherr LTM 1750-9.1, lattice boom mobile cranes such as the Liebherr LG 1750 SX which is our most prominent wind machine and lattice boom crawler cranes up to the Liebherr LR 11350. Recently BMS invested in a Huisman 3000 tonne ringer crane, which has the capability to lift components of 1200t to heights of 225m.

“Within the Australian fleet, we currently operate four Liebherr LG 1750’s as dedicated heavy lift machines. These are supported by over a dozen assist cranes in the form of Grove GMK 6300Ls, Liebherr LTM 1250s and Liebherr LTR 1220s. A Liebherr LTM 1750 -9.1 mobile crane is arriving back in Australia early this year to complement our fleet on the east coast,” said Edwards.

“Our fleet is tailored to provide an ‘all inclusive’ service particuarly to the wind energy market. We have tailored our fleet so we can mobilise the most effective cranes for main installation, pre-assembly and offloading activities.

“As we continue to diversify into civil construction, our efforts to ensure our fleet includes best in class machines is proving to be successful. We are demonstrating to clients the capabilities of machines such as the Liebherr LG 1750 lattice boom mobile crane. By utilising a shorter boom on a large outrigger footprint, we were able eliminate the need for a superlift tray that a crawler would normally require on some lifts. We have also seen the Liebherr LTM 1250’s and the Liebherr LTM 1750 utilising the VarioBase and VarioBallast features for increased productivity and lifting capacity,” he said.

When it comes to safety and quality, BMS Heavy Cranes has an unmatched reputation within the Wind Turbine Industry says SEQ Manager Tracey Gibbins.

“We have an exemplary safety record on all projects sites in Australia, and around the globe. We focus on providing Safe, Smart and Solution driven outcomes to our partners.

“Our safety record is maintained by a disciplined and systematic approach to the fundamentals of safety. This is underpinned by a cultural belief that all accidents are preventable. Our ground crew take a lead role in the health, safety and well-being of all activities undertaken on project site locations, seeking guidance from our experienced global Engineering and HSE-Q team when required,” she said.

The depth of knowledge and skills within the BMS Heavy Cranes team offers a seamless ability to deliver large projects efficiently, with the highest level of safety and proficiency. BMS considers legislative, regulatory, advisory, client and internal engineering requirements, and a consultative approach sees BMS partner with all key stakeholders on a daily basis.

“This approach is required if we are going to work safety and resolve difficult situations.

Our experienced crane supervisors and HSE-Q Coordinators not only understand the measures required to undertake the lifts safety, they live and breathe them with the ground crew for every lift,” said Gibbins.

“BMS Heavy Cranes is proud of our local crew which has been carefully trained to operate have our lift heavy cranes. Originally, our crew consisted of mainly European operators and riggers, but over the last five years we have acquired and trained local talent and they have become highly skilled in these specialised machines. Our current crew mainly features local talent which is supported by our global business and expert team who travel around the world sharing their knowledge and heavy lift expertise,” she said.

Being a dedicated heavy lift company, BMS Heavy Cranes has developed working relationships with a number of general hire companies locally to provide the larger cranes required to win projects they typically could not have tendered.

“By utilising our larger cranes, these companies can provide a competitive service to their clients for smaller taxi cranes and have the capabilities to perform the larger lifts in collaboration with BMS Heavy Crane. This is a win-win situation for all parties,” said Gibbins.


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