April 29, 2024

MachineMax & SCS JV halve idling on HS2 Victoria Road Crossover Box Project

The collaboration between MachineMax and the Skanska Costain STRABAG Joint Venture (SCS JV) on the HS2 Victoria Road Crossover Box site has notably halved idling times. This fusion of digital solutions with conventional construction methods marks a pivotal step towards boosting efficiency and reducing environmental impact, establishing a benchmark for future initiatives.
Project overview

The HS2 project represents a significant effort just west of Old Oak Common, featuring the excavation of a large shaft and box structure. The excavation phase, which involved the removal of approximately 240,000 cubic metres of material, then led to the construction of a 25-metre deep ancillary shaft, two connecting tunnels and the launch chamber for two Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs) to build the eastern section of the 8.4mile long Northolt Tunnel.

Implementation of MachineMax

Roughly 18 months ago, SCS identified the need to curb excessive idling to meet operational excellence and HS2’s environmental objectives. MachineMax was chosen for its precise monitoring capabilities, allowing for effective control over equipment usage and idling times across the project’s machinery fleet.

Challenges addressed and innovative solutions

Before MachineMax, pinpointing excessive idling causes was challenging, impacting fuel efficiency and machinery optimisation. MachineMax’s integration provided detailed insights into the specific machines, shifts and operators contributing to unnecessary idling. This enabled targeted corrective actions and fostered a culture focused on efficiency and accountability.

Ben Lennon, SCS Works Manager, introduced innovative strategies, including the use of heatmaps to scrutinise figures and machine usage based on shifts. This approach led to the inception of the 'Idling Oscars', an initiative where operators were allocated to machines and their performance was ranked on a leaderboard. The top performers were rewarded, while those needing improvement received further instruction. This not only enhanced operational efficiency but also shifted the company culture towards reducing idling, fuel consumption and noise pollution. Operators with downtime were encouraged to return to the office, further decreasing idling times.

Furthermore, a competitive spirit was instilled across different sites, with comparisons made between project managers to highlight who achieved the best idling figures. Lennon emphasises:

"The visibility provided by MachineMax is instrumental in pinpointing operational challenges. It’s the teams' engagement and their innovative use of data that drive significant improvements."
The impact of MachineMax

MachineMax has been transformative, significantly reducing idling rates as highlighted by Ben Lennon, who states:

"The implementation of MachineMax has been crucial in halving our idling times, significantly lowering our carbon footprint, reducing fuel costs and improving operational efficiency on site."
Future aspirations with MachineMax

SCS plans to continue leveraging MachineMax to minimise idling further, aiming for sustainable, efficient and cost-effective project execution. This commitment aligns with environmental goals and establishes a new efficiency paradigm in construction.

In summary, MachineMax and SCS’s partnership on the HS2 project showcases the transformative impact of digital innovation in addressing traditional construction challenges. Through detailed analytics and operational insights, MachineMax has enabled SCS to achieve notable efficiency gains, setting the stage for a more sustainable construction future.

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