In Zuid-Holland Boskalis is working in collaboration with Martens van Oord (MvO) on the depoldering of Noordwaard. The use of the land will be reallocated and it will no longer be inside the dikes, falling instead outside of the dikes once the project has been completed.
The project entails major excavation works and the use of heavy equipment. In light of this, using NINA was a conscious decision on the part of the consortium.
MvO general foreman Jan Blom has operated a power shovel for the past 25 years, so he is well aware of the risks. "It's easy to over- or understeer, so you have to create a working area that is broad enough to allow the driver to make corrections.
With this in mind, creeks are not excavated straight down, but stepped. This approach creates a broad revetment next to the transport track. One of the engineers recently discovered just why this approach is so important. While moving dockboards, the operator slipped off the boards in his power shovel, but was fortunately caught by the revetment. "Now I see what you mean!" exclaimed the engineer, in shock afterwards.
While this approach is obvious to Jan Blom, the same cannot be said of everyone. Earlier this year, Jan's son Marvin fell into a creek in his power shovel, landing upside down. The accident happened because he was only able to maneuver on the dockboards.
Fortunately he was not seriously injured and his power shovel was also barely damaged. Nonetheless, a revetment would have prevented the accident. With NINA in mind, Jan is calling for everyone to work using this approach at all times. "Because safety always comes first."