Go USA, Go USA, this will be my chant until the USA either wins the 2010 World Cup or is eliminated. The USA team success has temporarily overshadowed the catastrophe occurring in the Gulf of Mexico. However, we should not let our guard down as the oil has now started closing Florida beaches. Preventive maintenance and general preparedness will help everyone that might be affected. On that note, our most popular article of the week was titled Why Are You Waiting for Gulf Oil Spill To Impact You? which examined the oil’s potential impact on water and air quality.

We hope everyone had the opportunity to read our blogs and voter links as they were published, we have summarized them for you here. Please enjoy them and be sure to check back for new articles during the week. You can find a complete listing on the Mintek Blog.

1. Why Are You Waiting for Gulf Oil Spill To Impact You?

Author: Stuart Smith

As of 6/25/2010, oil from the Gulf Oil Spill has finally started closing Florida beaches with reports that the smell is so strong people are having breathing difficulties. This article discussed how the Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) can impact water and air quality. With the worse yet to come, residents and businesses in Florida need to prepare as best they can. Volunteer cleanup workers need to be aware of the health risks and make sure they are adequately prepared.

Key Point: Start stocking up on water, air filters and notice the signs of harmful pollution (see the comments left on the article).

2. USA Advancing in World Cup Means More Asset Maintenance

Author: Stuart Smith

The USA soccer team is making a strong case to be the cardiac kids of the year. A last minute goal pushed the USA in the knockout stages of the world cup (see video link). As the teams advance, cities should expect to be prepared for massive parties especially if the USA team makes it to the finals. Preventive maintenance will be the name of the game as municipalities look to inspect and repair damage from celebrating fans.

Key Point: GO USA, GO USA, Read our predictions and leave a comment.

3. Reducing Water Main Breaks With an EAM

Author: Stuart Smith

This article discusses the aging of municipal water infrastructures and how to best address the increasing amount of water line breaks. With City water systems often over 100 years old the number of leaks, waste and repairs is overwhelming limited budgets. An EAM can help alleviate this issue by converting reactive water maintenance departments into proactive teams for inspection and preventive care.

Key Point: Water leaks alone can increase costs 15%, when combined with the amount of emergency repairs taking place, water management needs to pursue a different plan of attack using an EAM.

4. Knock Your Capital Budget Out of the Park With an EAM

Author: Stuart Smith

Poor capital budget planning can result in untimely cash flow issues as well as unplanned downtime. Critical to constructing a good capital budget is knowing everything there is to know about your assets including their entire maintenance history. This article details the type of information required to put together a good capital budget.

Key Point: Acquiring the needed information for capital budgets is best done using a properly implemented Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) system because of the way data is collected and can be reported.

Read Relevant Articles That We Found Last Week

But wait there is more. We have found several more articles that you might find to be interesting on. The 4 best this week are:

1. Work Design and Technology

Author: Qaiser Fayyaz

Qaiser’s article made the list this week because he points out the difficulty and the amount of time it can take to implement technology changes. The concept is easily applied to the implementation of an EAM/CMMS because procedures do change. In addition, the use of technology may be unsettling to maintenance teams who have used the same paper based system for decades.

Key Point: When new technology is introduced into the workplace, job rules and interpersonal relationships all change. Change must be managed and nurtured.

2. Westinghouse Steam Generator Cleaning Technology Improves Performance at Seabrook Nuclear Plant

Author: Stephen Heiser

Stephen’s article covers a preventive maintenance techniques being used in the nuclear power industry. The technique, reduces buildup that has collected in steam tubes. Reducing the debris results in much higher energy efficiencies, reducing costs. This is another great example of how preventive maintenance can increase efficiencies and lower costs.

Key Point: Waste volume was reduced from 110,000 gallons to 10,000 gallons.

3. Attain the double vision of reliability AND maintainability

Author: Jeff Shiver

Jeff makes a good point that even the best equipment in the world (low MTBF) is unlikely to perform at optimal levels if the location or design of the equipment makes it nearly impossible to service (increasing MTTR). A simple but pointed article encouraging the use of common sense and careful planning of asset use.

Key Point: Savings from low Mean Time to Failure (MTBF) can be eaten up by higher Mean Times to Repair (MTTR).

4. Using Technology to Implement Business Process Improvements From Employee Suggestions

Author: Thayne Carper

This article agrees with several earlier blog posts that discuss the importance of employee feedback for implementing change with an EAM. Although, Thayne’s article focuses on capitalizing on cost reductions ideas, the principal is the same as using employee feedback to optimize operational procedures and achieving the critical buy-in for implementing an EAM.

Key Point: The people who know the business best are the employees, encourage their feedback, implement their suggestions. It makes change so much easier.

What We Learned This Week

Major points this week included, how long term planning and cost savings can be achieved using an EAM as well as the importance of engaging employees when incorporating EAM systems. An EAM is a long term solution for virtually any industry and can handle asset management for almost everything from water utilities to property management.