Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Fluor loses £251M claim battle

United States engineering giant Fluor has lost a battle over £251M of extra work it had to do on wind turbines for the Greater Gabbard offshore wind farm.

The firm said it had received an “adverse decision” from an arbitration panel.

Fluor had lodged a $400M (£251M) claim against client Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Limited (GGOWL) - a 50/50 joint venture between SSE and RWE Npower Renewables. It had sought the money for extra work it had done on 52 of the project’s 140 steel monopile foundations (NCE 6 October 2011).

The dispute focused on reworking of 52 defective steel monopiles and transition pieces. Fluor claimed that a design change amounted to a change in specification and that it should be paid for the resulting costs.

Defective foundations

But SSE said last year that the foundations were defective and that the “onus” was on Fluor to “fix” them.

This week’s ruling sided with GGOWL.

Fluor chairman and chief executive David Seaton defended his company’s work.

“Fluor delivered a quality project, and we are extremely disappointed with this unexpected decision, especially considering recent statements that acknowledge that all 140 turbines are commissioned and exporting electricity, and the overall performance is more than 10% ahead of the client’s expectations,” he said.

The wind farm is about 25km off the Suffolk coast and consists of 140, 3.6MW Siemens wind turbines, in water depths of between 24m and 34m.

The 230t, 16m long transition pieces and the average 62m long, 600t monopiles were fabricated in China and shipped to the UK.
In 2009 a routine check of the components in the UK revealed there appeared to be “ovalling” − in the monopiles, where they had deformed.
This is thought to have happened in transit or at the fabrication yard. As a result, the monopiles did not fit into the transition pieces.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.