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A Boiler Emergency at West Point Military Academy

At Powerhouse, we’ve just about seen it all when it comes to commercial and industrial boilers and boiler installation problems. So, imagine our surprise when the facilities team at the U.S. Military Academy West Point brought us something we rarely ever see: a rental boiler installation site not accessible by the road. Luckily, we have the engineering experience to handle situations like these, and our team swung into immediate action to solve the problem. Let’s start at the beginning...

The Problem

In October of 2016, West Point’s Public Works Department found it necessary to shut down their boiler room to perform necessary repairs to their steam lines. Unfortunately, the West Point Club, West Point’s event and catering facility needed that boiler room to be operational for several affairs that had already been scheduled for the month.

They did the only thing they could think to do – called Powerhouse. From the very beginning, the DPW was pleased with Powerhouse’s quick response and call to action. We immediately sent a few of our best guys to the site to ascertain the situation; size the load, select an appropriate boiler, and begin planning the installation.

That’s when we ran into the problem. If you have ever been to West Point, you will understand the issues associated with installation at the West Point Club. For the majority of our rental installations, we are able to drive right up and drop off the portable boiler room adjacent to the building being serviced.

Due to the large valley between Cullum Road, the parking structure, and the West Point Club, a straightforward installation simply wasn’t an option. Although accessible by car, the desired installation location could not be accessed by a semi-truck hauling a 40’ trailer weighing 48,000 pounds. We needed another answer.

The Solution

So, we called in our team of engineers, and after some serious consideration the decision was made to utilize a crane to remove the portable boiler room from the chassis and lower the container into position near the Club.

Rozell Industries was selected to provide the cranes and lifting support, while the engineering staff at Powerhouse provided the crucial details for the delicate maneuver. The lift required the use of a 450 ton crane (ATF 400G-6) to move the container 160’ laterally and 100’ vertically.

The Results

Working closely with the customer and Rozell Industries, Powerhouse was able to engineer a solution, deliver the boiler on time, and provide reliable steam for the duration of the outage. Not only did Powerhouse provide the equipment and engineering, we also trained on site boiler operators on how to safely and properly operate the RH-250 portable boiler room they had rented.

“[Powerhouse’s technicians] did a great job with informing our guys on the boiler operation and it is purring along right now with no issues. The boiler is operating beautifully.”

- Kenneth Miller, the Engineer Technician for the project

Powerhouse provided the equipment, engineering, service, and expertise required to get this project running quickly and smoothly. With over 30 years of experience in the boiler industry, Powerhouse is the go-to source for turnarounds, outages, increased demand, and emergencies.


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