Al Faris invests in oil and gas13 September 2012 by Cristina Brooks
UAE lifting firm Al Faris announced it would purchase USD$50m (€40m) worth of cranes in 2013, enlarging its specialised energy rental fleet.
Headquartered in Dubai, UAE, the firm has depots throughout the federation, including in Abu Dhabi, Jebel Ali, Sharjah Hamriyah, Ajman and Fujairah.
The company's fleet currently includes Liebherr mobile cranes ranging from 50-1200t, and is valued over AED1bn.
It added 25 Tadano GR 700EX in 2011, and 30 high capacity Liebherr and Tadano cranes in 2012.
Further upgrading its fleet, it has just placed an order for an additional six Liebherr LTM, 1 Liebherr LR and 2 Tadano, including two Liebherr LTM 1750, being delivered in 2013.
Al Faris recently opened a Saudi Arabian branch in Jubail, and, in 2007, introduced an energy rental division in the UAE.
"Our range consists of Diesel Gen sets rated from 50 to 1500 KVA, step-up transformers (6.6 | 11 | 22 kV), HV & LV Power cables, large capacity bunded fuel tanks, and mobile light towers. Al Faris operations manager Charles Govias describes, the firm uses its equipments to provide a turnkey solution incorporating design, build, commissioning and maintenance of power plants.
After the recession brought a decline in Dubai's construction sector, its one-time primary target market, it started providing the bulk of its services to the oil and gas sector.
Filling oil and gas demand requires safer lifting, and to meet that demand Al Faris will have to meet more stringent safety standards, and buy larger cranes.
Oil and gas companies will often specify much larger cranes for lifts in order to have a far wider margin of error, the company said.
Another aspect of energy lifting in which Al Faris has developed expertise is materials handling in the large magnetic fields generated by power plants.
For these lifts Al Faris sometimes uses cranes produced pre-2000, as it has seen electronic controls on new generation cranes interrupted by magnetic currents.
"Even before you get to the magnetic field with a new generation crane, you come to know as the crane simply stops driving, all signals and functions from the engines, gearboxes are interrupted.
"The answer to this is that the stranded crane has to be recovered, towed away from the area and then stand for a day or more to demagnetise," says Charles.
"Although, the crane is then totally magnetised all functions from the engine and gear box miraculously return after a period of time, enabling the crane to drive off.
Al Faris will continue to market its range of services, including, lift planning and risk analysis reports, not only for energy but for factories, ports, marine, shipping and the construction industry.