UK Power Networks begin drilling under River Orwell as part of multi-million pound boost to power supply in Suffolk and Essex
- Credit: Archant
Engineers have started drilling under the River Orwell as part of a £30 million scheme to boost power supplies in Suffolk and Essex.
A special directional drill is being used to bore below the river, from the nature reserve at Trimley to the Shotley peninsula more than 1 kilometre away as part of the UK Power Networks project.
Once this had been completed, the team will then drill under the River Stour towards Harwich.
Engineers will then lay 12km of 33kV cable underground which is set to boost the power supply in Felixstowe, Shotley and Harwich.
The project will then allow 21km of overhead lines to be removed from the area with the aim of improving the look of the nearby Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty sand Special Protection Areas along the nearby rivers and coastline.
Chris Sugars, project manager, said: “It is quite rare for electricity companies to drill under two major rivers so we gave brought in expert engineers from the Netherlands to carry out this specialist work beneath the River Orwell and then under the Rover Stour.
“This is a challenging and complex project which will increase the capacity to the area and meet its growing demands of our
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45,000 customers for decades to come.”
Engineers aim to have the drilling part of the scheme completed by November and the entire project completed at the end of 2018.