Rockfall Protection Project Update

Catchfence construction above Jamestown Wharf

Many residents on St Helena still remember the first phase of rockfall protection works at Jamestown Wharf. In 2008, CAN France installed rockfall netting above and below Munden’s Path to protect Wharf users from large rockfall, which had plagued the Wharf since its construction. The netting has worked well, with no large scale rockfall on to the Wharf for 12 years.

However, due to deterioration of the Munden’s Path wall, there is a risk of blocks falling from the wall – with a block recently impacting the Customs Freight Terminal building. So after a 12-year interlude, CAN France has now returned to Jamestown Wharf to build a bespoke lightweight catchfence, just below the wall. The fence will extend from the Customs & Port Control building to the Coal Yard – a total of 360m.

The construction is split into two activities. First, fence posts will be attached to the existing rockfall netting below Munden’s Path, and anchors will be drilled and grouted in place. The netting panels of the fence will then be attached to the fence posts, lifted into place by the helicopter.

Due to the potential for objects to be dropped from height during construction, restrictions on Wharf activities are necessary. A shuttle bus is in place to safely transport Wharf users from the first barrier to the end steps. Traffic marshalls will also direct Wharf users to safe zones, particularly during drilling and helicopter operations.

New rockfall catchfence in Rupert’s Valley takes a hit

The new rockfall barrier in Rupert’s Valley, after the St Helena’s Day rainfall

The fence, located above the lower African Graves site, was installed on 28 April 2020. Not even a month later, it was put to the test on St Helena’s Day. Following around three hours of intense rain, rocks came tumbling down the hill from Saddle Battery Ridge, and impacted the barrier. Olivier Merchat, the JET Systems mechanic, witnessed the event while enjoying his morning coffee! The fence retained all the blocks and sustained only minor damage.

#StHelena #RockfallProtection #AltogetherSafer

SHG / CAN France / Fairhurst

26 May 2020

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470