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AFE November/December 2013 : Page 13

Building and Blair House, which com-prises approximately 97 percent of the contract value. It also includes service and maintenance for the fi re suppression sys-tem, kitchen equipment, laundry equip-ment at Blair House, and pest control in specifi c areas of the Truman Building. Meeting contractual obligations for these facilities involves a unique set of re-quirements to ensure the comfort, well-being and safety of building occupants, while optimizing operational efficiency, reducing downtime and associated op-erational costs, and preserving the incal-culable value of these structures. Many of the same capabilities are required across government contracts, as well as commercial contracts, so the following examples have broader applicability. First class engineer Johnny Costantino operates the Energy Management System in the main chiller plant of the Truman Building. Photo courtesy of EMCOR. Trustworthy, responsible staff An extensive background check for security clearance is just the fi rst hurdle. Th e contract requires highly trustworthy, responsible and experienced staff with training and skills to operate and main-tain a 60-year span of HVAC and electri-cal equipment, including both pneumatic and electronic controls. Supervisors and staff must also address inherent diff er-ences between GSA’s original design standards and modern State Department uses; for example, 1940s-and 1950s-era spaces with contemporaneous HVAC and electrical systems that are used to support modern information technology. and implementing success strategies; and building skills through 100 percent Preventive Maintenance, OSHA 10/30 Hour Courses, ISO 9000, AFE CPS, PMI PMP, and other associated training. Th is makes EGS’s training program one of the broadest in the industry. (See Facili-ties Engineering Journal, March/April 2012, Training: One More of EMCOR’s Diff erences by Richard Stukey.) Federal contractors also need to meet or surpass the higher credentialing goals set by the Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act of 2010. EMCOR’s training portfo-lio sets the bar for the industry and far exceeds the new federal mandate. of drawings, since the piping was run in a riser located between the 1939-era Old War building and the 1958-era Truman Building. Th e Old War building had also undergone a massive renovation, com-pleted in 2003. It was determined that the piping used to service the fan coil units had been abandoned 10 years ago during the 2003 renovation. None of this piping was shown on the three original prints. Thinking on one’s feet As was the case during the presidential address at the State Department, electri-cians and HVAC engineers are oft en retained on standby to ensure no techni-cal diffi culties disrupt an event. Should any occur, a technician is within reach to address the problem … and occasionally avert a “diplomatic incident”. A big-picture perspective Oft en the root cause of a problem is a breakdown between systems. If a room feels too warm, there are numerous potential reasons. It could simply be a malfunctioning room thermostat, or it could be traced to a bad cooling coil or a failed damper in a ventilation duct, to name a few. It takes a seasoned mechanic to look at the systems as they interrelate and identify the root of the problem. For example, at the Truman Building, solv-ing O&M problems oft en requires staff to peel back many layers of as-built draw-ings to identify the source. In one case this summer, GSA requested EGS’s assis-tance to identify potentially abandoned piping for removal during an ongoing project. Th e staff reviewed multiple sets Training beyond the fundamentals Th e level of competence needed to run these facilities and sites requires train-ing that goes well beyond fundamental trade skills, due to inherent diff erences in design standards and old technology. Some examples include training for sys-tems like pneumatics, SIEMENS DDC, and newly installed boilers. Besides specifi c training on building systems, EGS’s program also includes teach-ing facilities professionals to adopt the right attitude about themselves and the importance of their profession; gaining knowledge through courses like the AFE CPMM Review Course; understanding Support from professional services Whenever necessary, EGS site-based staff can tap into the knowledge and experi-ence of professional engineers from the corporate headquarters of EGS. At the State Department alone, these engineers have conducted an extensive arc fl ash survey, assessed tie-off point loading for fall protection, provided a structural steel design for protecting roof equip-ment, performed the structural and electromechanical design for security screening buildings, and established the electromechanical design for two November/December 2013 ■ Facilities Engineering Journal ■ 13

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