Air Products said construction had been suspended because it has identified improvements through the work at its first plant that would also apply to the second site. It said that by deferring construction “we will be able to ensure any modifications are applied in a cost-effective way when activity is resumed”.
Work on its first plant will continue uninterrupted, the company said.
The 700 construction workers will be paid “as per their contracts”, it said and also reiterated its commitment to completing both projects.
GMB Union – “The problems seemed to be in a technology failure on the previous Tees Valley 1 plant which was constructed for Air Products next door by EPC company Foster Wheeler Energy”
GMB Union said there are talks with Air Products to try to resolve this “appalling situation”.
Michael Blench, GMB Regional Officer for construction, said: “This is yet another crushing blow for the workers on Teesside. Seven weeks away from Christmas 700 workers are told they are no longer required.
“This project was being built by the client Air Products who decided to also undertake the role of Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) management. It was duly signed up to category 1 of the National Agreement for the Engineering Construction industry (NAECI). It is 75% completed with excellent productivity and very good Industrial relations.
“The problems seemed to be in a technology failure on the previous Tees Valley 1 plant which was constructed for Air Products next door by EPC company Foster Wheeler Energy.
“All workers on site were told due to the problems with the TV 1 project that all work would now stop on TV 2 and they were that as of 1.30pm today (5th Novembers) they were finished on the project.
“GMB are in talks with Air Products to try to resolve this appalling situation, where due to no fault of their own members have been dismissed with no prior consultation regarding the disastrous situation with the technological problems on the site.”