Network Rail has released a stunning timelapse video of a scheme that has stabilised subsiding embankment located beneath the Chiltern main line.
Located in Buckinghamshire, this 12-week scheme was needed because the subsidence has the capacity to lead to the derailment of trains in the long term.
A machine from Japan – the Giken silent piling machine – was used to drive a mammoth 865 six metre-long steel sheet piles into the earth.
These have formed rows either side of the railway, forming solid barriers so that engineers could pack in 27,000 tonnes of stone, which has served to strengthen the embankment.
Completed in August, work to stabilise the subsiding embankment cost £2.9 million.
Mark Evans, works delivery programme manager on Network Rail’s London North Western route, explained how the machinery from Japan benefited the scheme.
“By using this innovative Japanese piling method, we got the job done quicker and cheaper than traditional kit would have allowed.
“The Giken machine grips the neighbouring steel sheet pile and silently uses it to lever in the next one, and so on. It’s simple, safe and saves taxpayers’ cash – exactly how we like it.”