A month or two ago I was contacted by a friend who advised me his colleague had put together an excellent film about his work on the Cable Enterprise and thought it might be of interest to you guys…
I contacted the video owner; Scott, and asked if it was ok to share with you and if he could explain a little more about his masterpiece, the following is his explanation of his video, I certainly hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
The point of the film itself is more to show the sights and feeling of this type of work without the boring tech specs “this is what we do” I guess is the theme. Most people onshore have no idea about subsea construction, cable installation or what it really looks like. Mentioned to anyone in a pub “I work offshore” the normal response is “Oil rigs?”
Bizarrely to most people the sea is not larger than oil rigs and fishing boats but their ignorance is well founded. Accessible information is hard to come by or in anyway promoted, generically people know more about city bankers and footballers, than any off/onshore engineering. Rather sad from the country that gave the world the modern industrial era. Specialist websites do little for the industry as whole. Filled with techno-waffle, incalculable sums and language that most non-engineers would struggle with, it is about as transparent as the NSA or the masons but that’s another story.
The film was made to show life onboard the Cable Enterprise a cable lay barge working on the Gwynt y Môr windfarm off the coast of north Wales. We installed the cables around 2.5m below the sea bed using the subsea plough an SMD MD3 for those who are interested. The cables around 2.5m below the sea bed using the subsea plough an SMD MD3 for those who are interested. The export cables were completed around June 2013 with the entire project expected to be completed around 2014. It will provide around 576MW of power on completion across 160 turbines yada yada yada… the project cost was around 2 billion euros, no one said green tech was cheap. To put this in context it will power 40% of the homes in Wales and prevent around 1.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide. So this is saving the world in slow-motion, and defiantly not as cool as ironman in slow-mo…
Offshore is a mix of mind-numbing boredom, routine and the unexpected excitement, which sounds interesting but you would rather it happened to the other shift. You bond as a unit, as friends and a family. The sights that once amazed in the first few years become commonplace, huge under-water robots, thousands of tonnes of turning copper is not working in tesco’s, but after 35 12-hour nightshifts it may as well be. I hope to show both the beauty and darkness which embodies what it is to work at sea in a contemporary context, without the health and safety video narrators that slowly sip the life out of every room that has the misfortune of plaguing.