A day in the life: CCGI Site Agent Tom Hughes

Site agent Tom Hughes has recently returned to the office after managing a complex ground investigation in Essex. Tom shares his journey with CCGI with us:

I’ve been an engineering geologist at CCGI for coming up to 5 years now, starting as a monitoring technician for 6 months and then becoming an engineering geologist through the graduate training program. The Essex Arena job in Thurrock was my first opportunity to site manage a large project in the role of Site Agent.

The project had its complexities with a multitude of current and previous land-uses, including an active go-karting track, a flooded quarry, two landfills and an abandoned racetrack. A comprehensive ground investigation was required to obtain geotechnical and geo-environmental data across the whole site. One of the mains aims was to identify the depth and thickness of the made ground and any associated contamination, along with the geotechnical properties of Thanet Sands and underlying Lewes Nodular, Seaford and Newhaven Chalk Formations.

I’d had plenty of experience as lead engineer and site managing smaller projects to this point, but this was a new and exciting opportunity for me. The skills and knowledge needed to do this role were ones I’d obtained from my time at CCGI already, it was just a case of putting them all together for this project to address the challenges. Sections of the site had time-constraints and required clean drilling techniques, meaning significantly reduced drilling time. I worked closely with the supervising engineer and landowners to plan to maximise our efficiency and keep all parties satisfied. There was also the potential to encounter severe hydrocarbon contamination. By using correctly placed bentonite seals any migration of any contamination was mitigated. It was important for us to locate the extent of any contamination so that the relevant designers and authorities had the information needed to remediate the area. The project was a success with few delays, thanks to good communication, cooperation and experienced drilling and engineering staff.

Onto the next one!

You can find more details about the project on our case studies page.