New mobile workshops make offshore underwater maintenance safer

A new fleet of mobile workshops has been launched, which will improve the safety of maintaining critical underwater control systems offshore.

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Glenrothes-based HCS Control Systems has invested £750,000 in development the unique Test and Flushing Workshops.

These mobile cabins can be used onshore and offshore to carry out pressure-testing, flushing and cleaning of controls pipework, umbilicals and hydraulic equipment without exposing personnel to the dangers associated with the work.

The compact workshops feature a blast wall partition, effectively segregating the pressure-testing and cleaning operations from the operator cabin, allowing workers to be fully protected from the hazards of using the equipment. Full control, measuring and recording facilities are available in the laboratory part of the cabin, allowing for the remote operation of hydraulic controls in a clean and safe environment.

Colin Milne, Sales Director for HCS, said: “Our new product is the only one of its kind and has been designed with safety firmly in mind.  Currently people carrying out these testing and maintenance activities are exposed to the significant hazards of this type of work.

“Feedback from workers encouraged us to look at what could be done to make these activities much, much safer and the result of our research, design and investment is a safer but effective solution that compares favourably with the rental costs of other test and flushing products on the market.

“However, because we fully understand our clients’ requirements in terms of equipment downtime and costs, our design provides the optimum configuration within minimum footprint to ensure effective fluids operations to be undertaken in any environment.  We have a fleet of ten units available to go offshore immediately with or without our specialist service personnel.”

Established in 1997, HCS designs, manufactures, assembles and tests subsea equipment and has earned a reputation for delivering fast track design, manufacture and testing of topside and subsea control systems to a global blue chip customer base

The company has experience strong growth in the last 18 months following a management buy-out transaction led by FrontRow Energy Partners together with Maven Capital Partners and Simmons Parallel Energy. This was followed by a £4.5million financing package with RBS in 2014.

HCS currently has a turnover of £14.6million, and employs almost 100 people.

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