78th CEG fixes water flow, saves AF $70,000+

  • Published
  • By Holly Birchfield
  • 78th ABW/PA
Workers from the 78th Civil Engineer Group's Industrial Utilities and Heavy Horizontal shops came together to help things flow better at Robins Air Force Base.

The crew recently wrapped up a three-month project to correct water flow problems on the 116th Air Control Wing's north end of the base.

Paul Kelley, 78th Civil Engineer Squadron director, said reaching a cost-effective solution took some time.

"We had been trying for years to loop the water system to improve flow characteristics on the north end of the base to make sure we had proper chlorine residual in the line, to make sure the lines were disinfected the way they should be," he said.

Mr. Kelley said project officials soon realized after crunching the numbers that doing the job in house was the best option.

Robins workers were able to do the work for about $274,000, much cheaper than the contractor's $900,000 to $2.1 million bill.

In the end, the 78th Civil Engineer Group's efforts saved the Air Force more than $700,000 in the project.

Mr. Kelley said the job required a lot of ground work.

"We installed about 4,000 linear feet of 12-inch water line," he said. "There were also several fire hydrants we put into the runway so that the fire department would be better capable of fighting a fire if there were an airplane crash in that area."

The project resulted in a greater amount of water for the 116th Air Control Wing area, Mr. Kelley said.

"It doubled our flow capacity from 1,239 gallons a minute of flow to 2,584 gallons a minute of flow," he said.

Ricky Tidwell, 78th CEG's Industrial Utilities Shop supervisor, said the crew worked under rough winter conditions to finish the task.

Despite rainy, cold weather and underlying surprises such as unknown utilities, Mr. Kelley said the undertaking was a success.

"It was a great team effort between the dirt boys (the Horizontal Shop), the Utility Shop, and the folks in Airfield Operations to get it done," Mr. Kelley said.