What is a pontoon? The Key Considerations

According to the UK National Ecosystem Assessment (NEA), barely 2% of the UK is actually built on.

In fact, ordnance survey data suggests that residential and commercial structures in the UK cover just 1.4% of the land’s total surface, with this figure rising to just 2% in England.

This highlights the challenges facing maintenance and construction workers, who often have to work in difficult to access locations defined by open, uneven land or natural waterways.

Fortunately, today’s workforce can use pontoons to work safely and efficiently in such circumstances. But what exactly is a pontoon, and what are their key applications in the UK?

What is a Pontoon?

In simple terms, a pontoon serves as a temporary access solution or platform, and one that can be built quickly and securely on water and uneven land.

Also referred to as floating pontoons, they provide sturdy and reliable platforms for a variety of applications, and can be built with variable load-bearing capacities to allow for the transportation of pedestrians, construction workers and machinery.

To this end, pontoons can be built in a variety of different materials, but we’ll touch further on this a little later in the piece.

Our pontoons are also modular in their nature, which means that they’re composed of small, evenly-sized components that are connected securely using advanced pin and nut moulds.

This type of design offers a number of advantages, particularly in terms of flexibility and the ease with which pontoons can be assembled (and subsequently taken apart).

Modular pontoons can also be adapted to suit different applications and bespoke orders, enabling clients to achieve optimal value for their hard-earned cash.

What are the Main Applications for Pontoons?

In most cases, you’ll find pontoons that have been manufactured using either plastic or steel, with these materials suitable for applications involving waterway and riverbanks.

You can also prioritise one material over the other depending on your precise requirements, with steel pontoons tending to provide safe medium and larger load solutions across an array of sectors.

Conversely, plastic pontoons may be utilised for projects with reduced load-bearing demands, and it’s important to keep this in mind when comparing your options in the marketplace.

OK, we hear you ask, but what exactly are the primary and most common applications for pontoons?

Well, one of the most familiar is projects that involve either bridge repair or inspection, as damage to the underside of structures require workers to gain access over the waterway that runs beneath.

In this instance, floating modular pontoons can be used to provide secure access that runs from the nearest riverbank to the areas in which work needs to be carried out, allowing for both workers and equipment to travel safely and efficiently at all times.

With this type of application, you can choose between plastic and steel pontoons depending on the load-bearing demands of the project, while seeking out advice from suppliers before making an informed decision (you can get in touch with our team here).

Other applications include construction and outdoor sporting events such as triathlons, while pontoons can also provide safe access during awards ceremonies and concerts.