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Loading sorted at the Mail

12 December 2012

Hörmann has provided customised loading bays, level access bays and security doors for a new Royal Mail distribution centre Hörmann has completed an integrated installation for the Royal Mail at its new distribution

Hörmann has provided customised loading bays, level access bays and security doors for a new Royal Mail distribution centre

Hörmann has completed an integrated installation for the Royal Mail at its new distribution centre at Swan Valley Northampton.Working closely with the main contractor Winvic, Hörmann has project managed the integrated installation of loading bays, level access bays and security doors.

By taking responsibility for the installation Hörmann has been able to offer flexibility and consistency with the team working on all aspects of the build hence reducing the number of contractors on site and improving efficiency. This hands on approach is one of the key elements Hörmann brings to all of its projects.

The high specification needed by the Royal Mail in terms of both security and operational requirements demanded the attention to detail that Hörmann are renowned for.

For the 23 loading bays, custom heavy duty dock levellers were installed with a special 600mm long telescopic lip. Since the dock levelers are cast into the concrete floor these are manufactured with pre-drilled viewing holes within the rear of the dock leveller frame, allowing air to escape as the concrete is poured ensuring the void under the frame is completely filled.

Dock shelters Similarly customised dock shelters were specified to operate with the wide range of vehicle types operated by the Royal Mail.

Standard curtain sides were matched with an inflatable head to create an efficient seal in all circumstances. The design of the inflatable cushion includes small air holes on the underside to maintain a constant pressure to create an effective seal. As an additional safety feature low energy LED Arrow shaped traffic lights are used to make it clear to the driver which light he should be looking at. This feature is particularly relevant for tight loading bays and for continental drivers. The long life diodes also prevent the need for regular checks for bulb failure required with traditional traffic light systems.

Insulated sectional doors are linked to the inflatable dock head to minimise heat loss as the doors open. The doors also benefit from standard heavy duty springs capable of high frequency use without failure to control the doors operation with longevity in mind. The doors also have a high quality pad-lockable shoot bolt with an integral micro-switch that isolates the door once engaged.

The shoot bolts link to the fully integrated composite control panel on each bay for the door, dock leveller, dock shelter, and traffic lights. This integrated control requires only one isolator switch reducing cost. Also linked to the control panel is a fluorescent swivel dock light to illuminate inside the vehicle.

Fluorescent light was chosen instead of the more common spotlight to ensure a better spread of ambient light in the trailer.

Four, level access, air-lock bays use the same insulated sectional external doors as the loading bays with the addition of internal biparting high speed doors with card access readers and movement detectors.With this arrangement smaller vehicles can be unloaded in the building allowing for a speedy flow of pedestrian traffic while minimising heat loss.

Security doors In addition to the loading areas Hörmann installed 15 high security doors with a LPS 1175 security 2 & 3 rating with continuous full height hinges, drill proof high security Abloy locks, Dog Bolt hinges and Security Astragal along with 3 double fully louvered doors.

Tom Langley, projects director at Hörmann took personal charge of the build. "We believe that our project managers have to get on site and work with the project contractors and designers to ensure maximum communication, efficiency and identify these key details. By getting the detail right and taking charge of the project we are able to maintain our competitive prices by ensuring that we engineer the right products and solutions so that they integrate efficiently to get the installation right first time. High quality and efficiency are the keys to our success." The approach that Hörmann applies with its project team taking responsibility for design and build has led to a positive working relationship with Winvic and other contractors. Dave Ward, operations director for Winvic Construction appreciates the way Hörmann work. "We have worked with Hörmann for a number of years and the fact that we deal with Hörmann on site and not a subcontractor is a major advantage.We feel that they work with us to develop the right solutions for our clients."