ND Water - April 2021
By: Kimberly Cook
2020 Review: Operations and Maintenance Activities
The Garrison Diversion Conservancy District (Garrison Diversion) employs a talented Operations and Maintenance (O&M) division, with multiple areas of expertise. Garrison Diversion O&M staff is responsible for keeping the facilities in the Garrison Diversion Unit (GDU) in tip-top shape. The McClusky Canal, New Rockford Canal and Snake Creek Pumping Plant (SCPP) are part of the GDU’s principal supply works.
Garrison Diversion works closely with the Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), and O&M work was completed under an Operations, Maintenance and Replacement contract with Reclamation. Garrison Diversion maintains multiple office locations – Carrington, McClusky, New Rockford, and the SCPP. Garrison Diversion was also tied to the Oakes Test Area in the southeast corner of the state, providing O&M assistance to the facility until the recent title transfer to the Dickey-Sargent Irrigation District, allowing for local control of the irrigation test site.
A professional engineer, master electricians, certified diesel mechanic, painting and coating specialists, vegetative management specialists, and multiple heavy equipment operators form the O&M team. In addition, the majority of full-time O&M employees have their commercial driver’s license (CDL). A safety coordinator promotes safety procedures and implements a comprehensive safety program to ensure a safe work environment for all employees. All of Garrison Diversion’s O&M crew has high levels of expertise for their jobs and maintains a high standard of work.
“Everybody on our team has their niche, from mechanics, to carpentry and electrical, and pipe installation,” says Darren Murray, O&M superintendent. “The combined knowledge and skill help us be able to get a lot of different stuff done.”
A large fleet of equipment is maintained with dozers, loaders, backhoes, trucks and excavators, and many specialized pieces that allow for work in a variety of situations.
Expertise in canal maintenance, earth moving and other construction areas enables the O&M staff to assist federal and state government agencies such as the State Water Commission (SWC), Reclamation, N.D. Game and Fish, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. These partnerships are beneficial to everybody involved.
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