Skutskär mill’s annual maintenance shutdown was in October. There were over 1 700 jobs that were planned to be performed during the just over two-week stop: maintenance shutdown, maintenance, inspections, cleaning, service, repairs and connection of new equipment were carried out. "The annual maintenance shutdown is a prerequisite for being able to rebuild our mill so that we are able to produce pulp around the clock for the rest of the year," says Henrik Holm, Mill Director at Stora Enso Skutskär mill.
Work on two major investment projects
During the annual shutdown, the installations for two major investment projects were done. One project is a new gas collection system that will reduce sulfur emissions and increase the mill’s environmental performance. This investment is worth EUR 15 million and is expected to be completed by the end of 2017.
The second major project in progress is to increase the production of fluff pulp by approximately 160 000 tonnes per year. This investment is EUR 26.5 million and is expected to be completed during the second quarter of 2018. Fluff pulp is mainly used in airlaid hygiene products, such as diapers, feminine care and adult incontinence products. It is also used in tabletop products and wipes. Both hygiene and non-woven products are fast-growing markets. This capacity increase will enable Stora Enso to support the growth of our customers and further develop the business with them. Stora Enso’s mill in Skutskär is the biggest fluff pulp producer in Europe.
Thorough planning prior to maintenance shutdown is essential. Work is ongoing throughout the year to ensure that the maintenance shutdown is as successful as possible. In order for all the work to be done, the regular staff of 350 people gained reinforcement of 1300 contractors. "There were many people in place and a lot of work to be done. But we were well prepared for this gigantic teamwork," says Henrik Holm.
Top priority in safety
Safety has always the highest priority in Stora Enso. "Everybody home safe every day" is the motto that applies to all work that is done in the company. During the shutdown, for example, employees made daily safety tours at the mill and all contractors had to take local safety training before starting their work at the mill. "I am very satisfied with the fact that we did not have any serious accidents in this massive shutdown with so many jobs and many contractors involved. Good work was performed in order to reach this. However, we also realised that we have areas to further strengthen and improve in our safety performance and we will start that work immediately", concludes Henrik Holm.