It takes an expert team to maintain a reliable system

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CAP inspector working

When CAP delivered its first Colorado River water to Harquahala Valley Irrigation District in 1985 the system was new, and its technology was state of the art. A lot has changed since then, but one thing that hasn’t changed is the reliability of the system.

At CAP, much of that consistent reliability has to do with some of the professionals who perform the hands-on work. The crafts and trade employees – CT employees – who travel across the state and ensure the infrastructure is in top working order.

Approximately 1/3 of CAP’s workforce falls into the CT category. Employees in these positions have specific vocational education, skills, training and experience that makes them, and the work they do, critical to the organization. They are highly skilled and specialized in their field — very respected for their expertise.

CAP maintenance worker

Maintenance workers can be found working in many areas of the organization. They are often the go-to person within a department, handling a multitude of tasks from general labor to tasks associated with the operation and maintenance of pumping plants, check structures, turnouts and aqueduct facilities. They complete detailed facility inspections and perform carpentry, concrete, welding, protective coating, pest management and equipment operations as needed.

CAP crane operator
CAP equipment operator

Crane operators, equipment operators and heavy equipment operators do some of the heavy lifting, both literally and figuratively. Crane operators operate all hoisting equipment including conventional lattice type cranes, mobile hydraulic cranes, crawler cranes, boom trucks and overhead cranes at the pumping plants. Equipment operators operate a multitude of items — including dump trucks, equipment trailers, water trucks, backhoes, loaders, small dozers, and mowing tractors – that is used for maintenance of the aqueduct, dikes, and civil structures. Heavy equipment operators operate all the heavy earth-moving equipment for the operation and maintenance of the aqueduct, dikes, and civil structures.

CAP industrial coating specialist

Industrial coating specialists are trained journeymen that prepare surfaces and apply epoxies, urethanes, polyurea and other industrial coatings to a variety of equipment, including pumps, piping, valves and vaults. They also prepare and paint exterior and interior surfaces of CAP buildings, structures, equipment, machinery and facilities. One of the requirements for these highly skilled professionals is the ability to work in confined spaces – spaces that often appear too small to enter to an untrained eye.

CAP shop mechanic

Shop mechanics perform preventive maintenance and repair for CAP’s fleet, which includes more than 400 pieces of heavy-duty equipment, trucks, and light vehicles. CAP employees traverse the state to maintain the system, logging more than 3,000,000 miles annually on the trucks and light vehicles, so maintenance and repair to those assets are critical to system reliability.

CAP millwright mechanics

Millwright mechanics are multi-craft journeyman, working in a heavy industrial hydroelectric environment. Much of their work is on vertical, synchronous pumping and generating units – ranging from a few horsepower up to 66,000 horsepower. They also work on supporting auxiliary equipment such as control valves up to 132-inches, compressors, bridge cranes, governors, heat exchangers, strainers, trash rakes, radial gates, piping and hydraulic systems.

CAP electrician

Electricians work in a variety of areas – pumping plants, instrumentation & control, meter & relay, centralized maintenance – and they too are multi-craft journeymen. They install, maintain, test, repair, service, troubleshoot and operate complex electrical and electronic systems.

CAP inspector

Inspectors are experts in a specific area — industrial coatings, civil, millwright mechanic, electrician – and inspect and provide oversight of contractors. They execute quality control and quality assurance activities to ensure compliance with contract specifications or industry standards during construction of new CAP facilities, repair of existing facilities or construction of facilities by others within CAP rights-of-way.

CAP has approximately 160 craft and trade professionals who provide their expertise to the system each and every day, ensuring the infrastructure remains reliable well into the future.

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