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Our Lady of Lourdes blessed morning photograph

Superior Scaffold estimator Pat McAndrew was at Our Lady of Lourdes medical center early last week and snapped this gem of the Mother Mary statue in her full glory.  Yes, it’s an iphone picture but you can clearly see that she’s up and beaming once again.

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I particularly like the halo at the top.

Pat was at the medical center for another scaffold install we are doing up “air” (as they say in Philly).  I’ll get you details on that just as soon as them become available.

Until then – enjoy.

You can read the original article about saving our Lady of Lourdes here:

And the follow up article in scaffold magazine – here.

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How to adapt existing system scaffold (Thomas Jefferson University Hospital)

Even the best laid plans get interrupted from time to time.  So was the case at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA.

The Alumni Hall building on the Jefferson University Hospital campus in Center City has been undergoing some changes to the HVAC system.

Superior Scaffold was called out to install scaffolding on the 6th floor rooftop spanning the entire 42 foot long section of roof all the way up the the 9th floor so workers could get up to make piping tie-ins and add insulation.

The scaffolding was in place and functioning well when one of the contractors determined that he needed to get directly beneath one of the supporting legs of the scaffolding to install a new rooftop HVAC unit.  Normally, not a problem but this was directly in the middle of the already assembled and functioning scaffold – and to make matters worse – it was beneath one of the supporting legs.

So the call went out to Superior’s 24 hour emergency services line and within hours they came up with a solution.  See the reconfigured scaffolding below.

You can see how the weight was redistributed to free up the room for the new unit to be installed beneath the scaffold while still allowing work to continue safely overhead.

Who says you can’t adapt an already built system scaffold?

Superior Scaffold at (215) 743-2200 is the best at what they do.

Saving Our Lady of Lourdes

TIMELINE OF HOW A SCAFFOLD COMPANY SAVED AN ICON – in less than 24 hours!

At 1:51 pm on Wednesday 8/23/11 an earthquake of 5.8 magnitude rocked the east coast.  It was followed by two smaller aftershocks of 2.8 & 2.2.  On the whole, structural damage was fairly limited – given the wide scope of the quake.

Immediately, inspectors were sent out to every scaffold job site to make sure nothing had shifted, moved, or changed with the scaffolding around any of the structures.  As the world found out – there were a few national structures that were damaged, such as the Washington Monument and the National Cathedral.  But up in Camden, NJ a national treasure was teetering on the brink of disaster.

Medium Shot of the statue on top of the building with scaffolding

The statue on top of Our Lady of Lourdes Medical center had shifted and broken.  The big fear was that an aftershock would topple the statue of Mother Mary – not only breaking the iconic figure but endangering patrons at the medical center.  The call went out to Superior Scaffold’s emergency services unit.

Our Lady of Lourdes Shift and CracksChips from the statue

Timeline for a rescue:

7:30am – Superior received the call the morning after the quake.

8:30 am – Superior was on site assessing the damage up on the roof.  A material list was sent out, as well as calls to team members who assist in erecting the scaffolding on top of the roof.  A truck was loaded at the yard and sent to Camden.

11:00 am – The equipment truck as well as 6 team members arrives.  A plan was in place to get the scaffolding to the roof – not an easy task (which I will detail in another blog about access).  Crews would have to use freight elevators to the highest point and then all of the necessary equipment would have to be taken up several staircases that wind up through the hospital to the second roof.

Access to the roofAccess for crews to get to the statueRoof Access to Lady of Lourdes statue

Once to the lower roof, a stockpile scaffolding to be used up on the next level was made.  Portions of the scaffolding were actually assembled in the very small second roof and then handed up to the top section.  Crew members had to climb through several more narrow areas of the hospital just to reach the statue on the roof.  Once there, a rope and wheel hoist were used to get the scaffolding up to the statue where it could be put into place.

The superior team worked until the wee hours erecting the scaffolding and securing the iconic statue to make sure no further damage could be done should there be more aftershocks.   Guy-wires were strapped all around the statue and tied down to make sure she couldn’t and wouldn’t topple over.

Guy-Wire all over the statue of Mother Mary

3:00 am – Less than 24 hours after receiving the emergency call Superior’s team finished the job.

Our Lady of Lourdes ScaffoldingOur Lady of Lourdes in place

In the oncoming months, restoration crews will come in and repair the damage that was done.

Even though the images of the guy-wires strapping her down are intense – the statue of the Mother Mary on top of Our Lady of Lourdes Medical center is safe and secure.

Top of Our Lady of Lourdes Medical BuildingOur Lady of Lourdes statue on top of the Medical Center in Camden, NJ

Mother Mary looking over the city of Philadelphia

Hospital administrators could now rest safely, knowing that one call to Superior scaffold saved an icon. (Our Lady of Lourdes)