It was only in January this year that EEM first crossed paths with G&H Civil Contactors and its partners Padraig Haskins and Noel Grealish. We were in Canberra taking a look at a site in the CBD that G&H were about to demolish – a 17-story building in the thick of one of the busiest parts of Canberra CBD for Morris Property Group. Obviously, with a task like this one, it’s not just a matter of simply ripping down such a substantial concrete structure.
There’s a whole pile of elements to think about, like safety, of not just the workers but the surrounding public walking the foot paths below the immediate area. With dust suppression also being a big focus on a job of this size in such a populated area, the project was always going to have its challenges.
At the beginning of this project, Padraig and Noel had also purchased new Epiroc gear from their longstanding supply partners BA Equipment, which they were really looking forward to firing up on this project, so when we heard that the boys at G&H were at basement level and only weeks away from completion we figured it was the perfect time to jump on a plane and say g’day, and find out how the last six months had unfolded, as well as getting the downlow on just how well the Epiroc attachments from BA Equipment had performed.
Jumping off the plane in Canberra the temperature was -2 degrees in the sun and the site on Allara Street in the CBD, which stayed in the shade for all of about an hour over the course of the day, proved to be one of the unforeseen challenges for quite a few of the lads who are usually based in the considerably warmer Queensland. They were talking about the lazy winds of Canberra that I hadn’t heard of before, which when I asked one of the boys affectionately known as “the Sexy Irish Bas**rd”, replied in his perfect Irish accent, “The winds down here in Canberra are real lazy, they couldn’t be bothered going around you, so they just go straight through you”, which pretty much summed it up perfectly.
The site itself was hugely impressive, they had hit basement level and the excavators were hauling out the last of the material to be removed, where last time we visited stood 17 stories of steel and concrete.
The shotcrete reinforcing and anchoring looked fantastic and they were ahead of schedule.
I had the opportunity to dig a little deeper about how the last six months had unfolded with Padraig who has been running the Canberra job since day one. Padraig shared, “It’s been a great job. Everything has gone to plan and our Epiroc attachments have been an integral element of remaining on time and on budget. Other than the normal servicing at the appropriate times of the attachments, the Epiroc gear hasn’t missed a beat.
On this job we have utilised our SB302 rock breakers on our 5 tonne excavators, the HB7000 on our new Volvo EC750, our new CB350 concrete pulveriser has been a true standout, and the HM1500F hydro magnet has had fantastic results in separating our steel from the rubble for recycling.”
The effort the team at G&H have put in on this project has seen them pick up another Canberra-based project; this one not quite as large as the 17-story demo but requiring the same level of precision and safety the team at G&H are renown for. On top of that the lads are gearing up for some substantial projects up in their home town of Brisbane, which if all goes to plan will see them involved in some very serious and large-scale tunnelling projects over the next few years.
Padraig and Noel are also the brains behind EjectX trucks, which if you have been a little pre occupied over the last 6-12 months is a ground breaking non-tipping tipper. Orders for the EjectX trucks have been steadily growing as large civil and construction companies are realising that the safety benefits of this style of non-tipping tipper far outweigh the extra cost of this style of truck. You couldn’t wish this type of success on a better bunch of blokes either – they’re all hands on deck when it comes to professionalism and safety, and at the same time they are an infectious crew that are just good people to be around.
Also onsite in Canberra was Campbell Nunn, Managing Director of BA Equipment Group (BAEG). Campbell himself is a Mechanical Engineer who founded the company in 2012. BAEG are specialists in hydraulic attachments and pride themselves on delivering first-class service to their customers in the construction and mining industries. Robert Guerin, BAEG’s QLD State manager and his team in Brisbane have been working with G&H since Padraig and Noel set up their company in 2010.
When asked about BAEG’s relationship with the G&H lads, Campbell answered, “Over the last nine years we have developed a productive, long term, open and honest working relationship with G&H. Companies like G&H form our core customers and our teams work hard to ensure that the products and backup service we offer is helpful and relevant to their businesses, allowing us to support clients to grow into the future,” Campbell continued, “G&H have purchased a large range of Epiroc Premium hydraulic attachments, which include SB, MB and HB hydraulic hammers, Erkat drum cutters and GTS diamond rock saws. We also support them with consumables and most importantly the right service to keep their attachments working.
“Padraig has many years of experience using hydraulic attachments and we always value his experience, input and feedback. The team at BA enjoy working with Padraig very much and they tell me Padraig is always cheerful and good for a quick joke or two (even when the pressure is on).
“Both Padraig and Noel have a very good understanding of hydraulic attachments, applicatios and maintenance requirements and are always keen to innovate new ways to get the maximum results and efficiencies from them. In addition, Padraig is always open with honest feedback and input to our team, which helps us continue to deliver the products and services to meet Padraig & the team at G & H’s needs.”