Around the World: McElroy provides training in Costa Rica; Australian distributor battles historic flooding

In early March, a McElroy team travelled to Costa Rica. In addition to visiting customers, the trip was also a chance for personnel to provide workshops and seminars to help maintain McElroy’s distributor/customer relationship.

The first visit took place in Heredia, Costa Rica, not far from the nation’s capital in San José. There, operators and staff from the ESPH (Public Service Company of Heredia) construction and potable water department participated in a fusion workshop, answering questions and providing the latest information in the fusion process.

ESPH is a government institution that is responsible for water distribution to Heredia, offering service to more than 75,000 subscribers. Their water distribution system is 100% HDPE pipe, ranging in size from 1 to 16 inches. For more than 10 years, ESPH has been loyal to McElroy, utilizing only McElroy equipment for installation and repair. That includes equipment like Pit Bull®, DynaMc®, Polygon™ and DataLogger®.

In all, 24 staff members and five managers and supervisors attended the workshop.

On the second day of that visit, McElroy provided a PE Alliance Seminar: “Fundamental Standards of HDPE” to managers and supervisors. McElroy University has been certifying this crew in the last eight years, and during this visit there was interest in again providing certification for operators and inspectors. Currently, ESPH engineers are in the early stages of planning a trip to McElroy’s Tulsa location and will decide in the following months if that plan will come to fruition. In addition, ESPH has expressed interest in having a McElroy Certified Trainer in their company to help train new hires, though it is looking at that plan’s feasibility for this year.

McElroy personnel’s second visit was to the National Institute of Learning (INA) in Heredia. The INA is a government institution in charge of training the technical workforce needed by all companies in Costa Rica, including the construction of aqueducts.

At INA, personnel hosted a PE Alliance Webinar, “Fundamental Standards of HDPE.” The seminar was broadcast from the Heredia offices and reached 13 teachers in charge of carrying out the pipe installation program for rural aqueducts. The webinar was provided to support and stimulate the INA in the creation of a course for HDPE pipe installations, which would be taught in all 40-plus branches of the country. Carrying out this course would, in turn, mean acquiring several pieces of thermofusion equipment.

March has certainly come in like a lion for Australia. Between McElroy partners moving locations, the arrival of all sizes of TracStar® iSeries, and major floods in Queensland and New South Wales, there’s been plenty to juggle just to stay afloat.

Pipeline Supplies and Hire (PSAH) has officially outgrown its last depot in Clontarf, a Brisbane suburb located on the eastern coast of Australia in Queensland. After several years in that depot, the company decided to move down the road to a much larger, approximately 129,000-square-foot new location. This new spot offers a larger warehouse space and will let PSAH expand their service capabilities and improve their operations.

This new site provides dedicated spaces for the mechanic shops, adding capacity for servicing and storing McElroy equipment. Currently, PSAH boasts five units (three “Utes” or utility vehicles and two trucks) specially fitted for servicing their range of McElroy equipment in the field.

While PSAH was working through its relocation, major flooding swept through several communities in Queensland and New South Wales. In all, eight people have died in relation to the floods, with many more missing and hundreds rescued in Brisbane’s Central Business District and other areas. In some places, the water is the highest it has been in more than a century.

On a more positive note, the TracStar® iSeries range of machines is on the ground in Australia in all sizes, with seven TracStar® 900i units, one TracStar® 1200i and one TracStar® 630i ready to go to work. Eight more units are set to land shortly, including one more TracStar® 1200i. On March 2 and 3, Sergio Yibrin and Chris Greggs performed training for Adroit on a TracStar® 900i and TracStar® 630i in preparation for the machines being sent to Western Australia for their end users to take possession of them.