A Day In The Life Of An Engineer in A Busy Construction Site

by Victor Macauley

Victor pic 1I was placed at the Crossrail C520 Custom House Station Project, which is getting to the close to its finishing date. I learnt how the engineers correlate the designs they get on the building site by using surveying instruments such as a theodolite with a rotating telescope which is used for measuring angles both horizontally and vertically. It is an important tool in ensuring that the on-site projects fit in with the design measurements as it can give a high amount of accuracy. Firstly you set up markers around the area and then lock on to it on using the theodolite and then point the laser to the point you want to measure on the screen it will give you the distance from the marker that the object is.

Glass cladding being placed on a lift shaft
Glass Cladding being placed on a lift shaft

Furthermore I was placed with an Engineer in a managing role as a Package Planner named Damien, whose role was to be on site and liaise with all the workers ensuring that there doing the right work. On this particular occasion one of the contractors, a firm dealing with lift installations, came to survey the lift shafts. The following conversation between Damien and the  representatives was a really interesting one where they were talking about the issues with the lift shaft. Damien had to use his creativity and knowledge to come to solutions for the representatives, as they were worried that their lift might get damaged when installing. That little meeting gave me a great insight  in what engineers in managerial roles have to be able to do.

I really enjoyed my week with the Liang O’Rourke team at Custom House and my experiences there, from gaining valuable knowledge on the pathways to engineering from the engineers and what the engineers are expected to do – for example providing task sheets to the workers showing them how to use machinery safely and efficiently, as safety and ethics is of huge importance for Liang O’Rourke and Crossrail.

Experiencing a week on a construction site has made me want to get into engineering more and try to get more real world experience of engineering in action.

Victor undertook a week-long placement at the Laing O’Rourke Custom House Station project, part of the Crossrail project.