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Week of 11 March 2024: Maintenance on the fringes

Email Jim at jim.thompson@ipulpmedia.com

Sometimes I think maintenance suffers from "macho disease." We talk about changing out press rolls, monitoring machine bearings and other sorts of "big deal" maintenance projects. I would hate to think how many times I have been exposed to pump and motor alignment. Yes, it is an important subject, but it is not everything.

There are other things that can shut you down, too (or at least cause you to lie). Things such as maintaining laboratories at TAPPI standard conditions. Or making sure the trailers that load out of your dock have leak proof roofs and sides. Then there are the paper rolls that aren't correctly wound.

Air conditioning in MCCs and computer rooms must work 24/7.

So must vehicle and personnel access gates.

I consider it maintenance to bring in your local public safety personnel and familiarize them with alarms, access, dangerous conditions and materials.

Underground piping, especially connections to city and utility services, are easy to neglect.

In old mills, create a program to look for cast iron piping in pressure steam systems. A broken elbow can put you down in a heartbeat and cause injuries, too.

Follow this rule--if it is hidden, it likely is not maintained. Also, remember that size is not relevant to those items that can shut you down. The tiniest of items, in the right place, can shut you down very quickly.

Look over the above list again. Add your own unique items to it.

The criticality of this list is that maintenance training often does not cover many of these items. You can have the best predictive maintenance program in the world, but if these items are not on it, you are vulnerable.

Be safe and we will talk next week.

March Maintenance Platinum Sponsor: RMR Mechanical - We perform as planned! 770-205-9646

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