Rocla’s New Concrete Products Provide Innovative Solutions

Johannesburg – June 2011 ‐ Rocla, a market leader in precast concrete infrastructural products and solutions, introduced a new range of concrete products at a series of road shows held in seven major regions in South Africa during June 2011.

This new range is aimed at a diverse range of applications, spanning a wide range of industries and customers, from contractors, end users, engineers, architects, to municipal and government departments.

Rocla’s new range of innovative precast concrete products includes cutting edge vehicle restraint systems, security and retaining walls, rainwater harvesting tanks, wingwalls and oil and grease separators, all of which will enhance and complement Rocla’s existing product line of culverts, storm water pipes and concrete poles.

Trevor Barnard, MD at Rocla

“By leveraging the inherent advantages of precast concrete and through extensive research and development, we have sourced and created alternative solutions that will go a long way to provide innovative, durable and cost effective solutions to solve common construction and infrastructural problems,” said Rocla’s managing director, Trevor Barnard, at the launch event.

Rainwater Harvesting Solutions
Rocla will manufacture a range of rainwater harvesting tanks for residential, community and municipal deployment that will play a role in solving sanitation and water challenges by capturing clean rainwater and storing it safely underground for future use. In collaboration with the local license holders of the ecoTechnic® range of rainwater harvesting accessories from Alltrap Engineering in Austria, Rocla will introduce their full range of systems to the Southern African market.

The concrete tank is installed underground where it is able to capture large quantities of water from roof and parking area runoff. The design includes a filtering system, pump and other items on the inside to ensure effective delivery of safe water for general grey water applications. Tank sizes range from 3000L to an unlimited volume allowing for thousands of kilolitres of stored water with uses varying from average households to school storage below fields and commercial applications below parking areas.

“The concrete tank range,” explained Justin Kretzmar, Rocla’s sales engineer in charge of new products, “is robust and will support cars driving over it in a parking lot application, avoiding the loss of valuable above‐ground space and effectively addressing some sanitation challenges, whilst conserving potable water.”

Precast Wingwall for Infrastructure
Rocla has identified the need for more cost effective and time saving solutions in the infrastructure and construction industry and is the first concrete manufacturer in South Africa to offer a complete range of precast wingwall units to the market. These units have applications in both culvert and stormwater installations to ensure maximum hydraulic flow performance at both inlets and outlets of these structures.

The units can fit a wide range of pipe diameters, as well as rectangular culvert sections and consist of two parts, namely the headwall, wingwall and apron, which is cast in one piece, and a separate precast concrete toe that keys the unit to the ground for extra stability against impact loads.

Kretzmar added, “The benefit of utilising these units during construction is that it is made of a high strength concrete mix which reduces quantities of materials, leading to a more cost effective product made of superior quality and with a more efficient installation process than the current insitu options. The units eliminate the need for formwork, site‐mix concrete and reinforcement required on site, resulting in guaranteed quality and the prevention of delays due to curing or stripping and with limited waste or clean up.”

“With the traditional method, the structure is cast on site and the concrete needs a minimum of 24 hours to set before any formwork is removed, making installation a two to three day process. With the Rocla units, the installation of the wingwall units takes less than 30 minutes.”

Vehicle Restraint Systems
Another innovative product that Rocla will manufacture under licence is the Rebloc road barrier, the latest European innovation in vehicle restraint systems, which can make road‐work zones safer and increase the general level of road safety on South African roads.

The Rebloc systems offer permanent and/or temporary barrier separation on the sides and middle of roads or placed as required during road works. With no loose parts, the barriers allow for quick and accurate installation as the patented coupling (fastening component) is fixed to and protrudes from either side of each element.

According to Kretzmar, these barriers can provide a safer option to SA roads and are a low maintenance and cost saving solution.

“These barriers are also suitable for many other applications and environments, such as security barriers protecting people or assets, control of mudslides at the base of mountains, prevention of illegal dumping, blocking entrances to areas with health and safety access requirements and as a fast, temporary or permanent and cost effective way to separate bulk materials or minerals,” he added.

Other Precast Products
Rocla has also secured the license from a UK based company to manufacture their full range of high security and retaining walls which have been successfully used in UK, France, Ireland and USA for up to 12 years. These walling systems consist of large concrete blocks in specific shapes from heights of 1.2m up to 3.65m. Also in association with the ecoTechnic license holders, Rocla is introducing a full range of oil and grease separators meeting the highest European specifications for such products.

Barnard concluded, “The response to our new portfolio of precast concrete products has been well received so far, and we look forward to providing cost effective, durable and robust solutions that maximise the inherent qualities of the material in a wide range of applications. This diversification of our product range and related investment bodes well for our group as it introduces a new income stream that assists to combat the recent slowdown of infrastructural and construction projects in South Africa.”