On 3rd October, Damen Shipyards Galati hosted a celebration marking the keel-laying of a Damen Marine Aggregate Dredger (MAD) 3500 for Hanson UK. The event was well attended by representatives of both Damen Shipyards Group and Hanson UK.
The keel of the new MAD 3500 was laid at the Romanian yard a few days prior to the celebration, on September 20th. At this event, tradition was observed with the inclusion of four coins in the keel – a Romanian lei, a British pound, a Dutch guilder and a euro.
The MAD is a new design from Damen that can dredge material at depths of up to -55 metres. It applies innovative maritime technology to ensure operability in harsh conditions – Hanson will operate its vessel in the English Channel and the North Sea – without compromising on safety.
Damen sales manager Joppe Neijens explains that this is a priority for both parties. “Safety is of extreme importance for both our companies and will, therefore, be a robust priority throughout the construction of this vessel and beyond. We have implemented the Governance of Risks and Incidents Programme (GRIP), which sets the standards for health, safety and the environment for the Damen Group. Through this initiative we take preventive steps towards safer operations and share our vital lessons to help further promote excellence in safety. Safety onboard is also of critical importance and we have taken steps to incorporate this throughout the vessel – including application of operational ergonomics in systems and the installation of all dredge pipes above deck. We are very pleased to celebrate this momentous occasion and look forward to the construction of this exciting vessel.”
The MAD 3500 will be constructed at the Galati yard, while the modular dredge system will be provided by Damen Dredging Equipment in Nijkerk, the Netherlands. Hanson’s MAD 3500 will also feature a dry unloading system from PLM Cranes.
Hanson is amongst Europe’s largest producers of marine dredged sand and gravel. The company is a leading supplier of building materials to the heavy construction industry, producing aggregates, ready-mixed concrete, asphalt and cement & cement-related products.
Speaking at the celebration to mark the keel laying, Hanson UK’s chief executive officer Simon Willis said: “Our investment in this new dredger will provide a vessel at the cutting edge of safety, performance and sustainability. Damen share our approach in placing safety at the heart of all its activity and it’s been impressive to see this in action at the Galati yard. We look forward to welcoming the new addition to our Hanson Aggregate Marine fleet in 2021.”