AMERICAN SpiralWeld Pipe (ASWP) donated 24- and 36-inch pipe and participated in the first-ever Pile Driving Contractors Association’s (PDCA) Contractors Foundation Institute (CFI) Driven Pile Academy April 4-7, 2022. The event was hosted by PDCA at Patriot Construction in Duson, Louisiana. More than 85 contractors, engineers, designers and estimators attended, and classroom and hands-on training were provided. Attendees learned the basics of pile driving, including operating various equipment, best practices for jobsite safety, an overview of piling best practices and geotechnical testing necessary for a safe and impactful jobsite.
ASWP Engineer Ahmed Abdelhafiz and Inside Structural Sales Representative Michael Cameron were selected by the committee to be instructors and served as spiral-welded steel pipe subject matter experts during the on-site classroom, testing and teaching portions of the Driven Pile Academy.
“Patriot Construction provided the more than 20 acres of land needed to host this industry academy,” Cameron said. “PDCA’s CFI attendees acquired knowledge from more than 30 pile driving industry experts and gained hands-on experiences with the over $10 million in equipment donated. The goal of CFI’s Driven Pile Academy is to educate those in the pile driving related fields on the facets of the industry with a focus on individual hands-on learning.”
AMERICAN pipe was used when teaching operators and engineers the proper use of impact and vibratory equipment. ASWP also donated pipe to assist in two major geotechnical engineering studies. The first study compared the driveability of spiral-welded steel pipe versus other pipe materials through dynamic testing. The second study measured the characteristics of spiral-welded steel pipe for open ended pipe plugging and then assessed with restrikes at the three- and seven-day marks. Studies like these are only possible when geotechnical engineers, equipment manufacturers and piling suppliers, like ASWP, work together.
“We are so fortunate to have partners like ASWP,” stated Pollyanna Cunningham, creator of CFI and co-chair of the PDCA Associate’s Committee. “Their team not only provided materials, but their on-site expertise also enhanced every student’s experience.”
Cameron said, “For this to be a pilot event, it was a tremendous success. CFI’s level of planning and cooperation that was achieved in 10 months was very impressive. AMERICAN’s presence shows our commitment to the driven pile market. Not only did we add benefit to this Academy, but our team also gained further insight on all aspects of jobsite safety and geotechnical importance of piling. PDCA’s CFI Driven Pile Academy did more than highlight our spiral-welded steel pipe. It evaluated and proved our versatility in the driven pile market.”
CFI’s Driven Pile Academy was conceived by two women who together chair the PDCA Associates Committee, which focuses on providing education to those in the pile driving industry. The Driven Pile Academy is the first in an upcoming educational series under the CFI’s banner to enhance and promote the industry.
PDCA is a 26-year-old, nonprofit organization representing an international membership of pile driving contractors, equipment manufacturers, materials suppliers, affiliated engineers and other stakeholders in the deep foundations industry. PDCA regularly hosts technical events, an annual conference, a webinar series and other opportunities for industry optimization and advancement.