Miami-Dade Sewer & Water Chooses to Sharpen the Saw

on . Posted in WCQ Newsletter

With over 342,000 customers, 6,000 miles of sanitary sewer, 80,000 manholes, and 1,000 pump stations, the sixth largest sewer district in the nation chose to STOP working on September 12, 2014.

Specifically, the management team over the inspection and grouting crews elected to bring 24 of their field service people into a classroom setting to train new employees, cross-train existing staff, enhance skills, and increase overall understanding of their chemical grouting operations. You may refer to this as “Sharpening the Saw,” a concept made famous by author Stephen Covey, but stopping production long enough to reflect on purpose, process and practice pays dividends. Citizens of Miami-Dade communities are the benefactors.

Instructors from Logiball and Avanti led this five-hour educational session dedicated to Miami-Dade’s operation. Marc Anctil, President of Logiball, conducted a session on remote lateral packers including equipment overview, troubleshooting, and how to seal the annular space between host pipe and liner. Avanti’s Field Service Manager, Charlie Lerman, focused on adjusting AV-118 gel-times based on site conditions, as well as crack injection and curtain grouting of manholes, wet wells, and lift stations. The content was well received--well worth the half-day investment in their people.

It is hard to argue with a successful operation. Rod Lovett is Chief of Miami-Dade Wastewater Collection and Transmission and is very public about the benefits of their I&I program. “For every $1.00 we spend on I&I reduction, we receive $2.50 in cost avoidance. Chemical Grout is an inexpensive way to reduce leaks in our collection system and we are experiencing 128 MGD of flow reduction to our treatment plants.”

An after the event comment from Charlie Lerman, “I was impressed with the experience level of this team and how motivated they were to learn more, improve, and honor all safety procedures.”

Charlie and other Avanti instructors enjoy teaching what they know. We host four to five grout schools annually, but it is not uncommon to mobilize trainers to any city in North America with a few weeks advanced notice. Education…the way forward.