Bayhealth’s Plant Operations department recently began to operate the central plant located at the Bayhealth Sussex Campus.

This marks a milestone in the project and its completion.

“We’re really excited to be part of this transition process,” said Jake Tieman, carpenter.

“Few people get this kind of opportunity in their career,” said Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning Mechanic Ben Tebbens.

Bayhealth Milford Memorial Plant Operations Supervisor Jason Muir explained some of the early activities the team is working on at the Bayhealth Sussex Campus.

“The central plant was turned on so that air handling systems could be put into service to establish the proper temperature and humidity in the building. We’re also commissioning the building and equipment,” said Muir. “Commissioning is the process by which facilities, systems and component equipment is tested to verify it functions according to its design intent and specifications. Senior Director of Facilities Management Lou Garzarella is collaborating with CannonDesign and Whiting-Turner staff to develop testing scripts for ensuring everything is functioning as designed under all operating conditions. Ben Tebbens and Keith White [electrician] have played a pivotal role in this process.”

The on-site team is also further developing maintenance plans and schedules while continuing to conduct weekly floor-by-floor inspections of the progressing construction buildout.

“As part of the inspection process, we use iPads that are hooked directly to the BIM [Building Information Modeling] software, which is a virtual model of the hospital and outpatient center,” said Muir. “This allows us to photograph and document identified issues, and then Whiting-Turner can pass it on to the trades so they can deliver on their promises.”

“We’re doing what are known as ‘fire stopping inspections,’ which includes checking out walls, ceilings, door frames, door panels, door hardware, and door operators,” said Tieman, who is handling most of the life safety component inspections. “For example, walls and ceilings have penetrations in them when utilities are installed to service every room in the building. We’re inspecting the sealant used in and around these penetrations. These sealants are designed to limit the passage of smoke and fire, and are key to us providing a safe environment for our patients and those that care for them.”

Tebbens said he’s also helping Tieman by checking smoke and fire dampers to make sure they are where they are supposed to be and functioning as intended.

“As far as the maintenance program, I’m going through the equipment manuals and looking at the manufacturers’ recommendations in terms of frequency and the tasks and steps that should be followed,” said Tebbens.

“This is critical information when developing a maintenance program designed to provide highly reliable systems that will meet and exceed expected life cycles. We take our responsibility to provide uninterrupted utility systems for our patients very seriously, and have tasked some of our best people — Jason, Ben, Keith and Jake, to name a few — to help us deliver on that promise,” said Garzarella. “We will be ready.”

The new Bayhealth Hospital and Outpatient Center, Sussex Campus opens in February 2019.

For more, visit BayhealthSussex.org.