L.A. Port Hires Firm to Set Up CMMS

The Port of Los Angeles awarded a contract to LA Consulting, Inc. to implement a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS), according to a Dec. 3 press release.

Harry Lorick, P.E., LA Consulting president, made the announcement. The project started June 2008. 

The port, operated by the Harbor Department of the city of Los Angeles, comprises 43 miles of waterfront and about 7,500 acres of land and water. More than $230 billion worth of cargo moves through the port every year. This trade supports 3.3 million jobs nationwide, with 919,000 jobs in Southern California alone. This generates more than $39 billion in wages and tax revenues. In 2007, the port handled more than 8.4 million TEUs (container capacity is often expressed in 20-foot equivalent units -- TEU) and a combined 182 million metric tons of cargo. 

The firm recently completed an extensive management audit that evaluated maintenance operations and identified opportunities to improve port operations. All assets were evaluated, some of which, in addition to roads, sewer, and stormwater lines, traffic signs, traffic markings, water and irrigation lines, also include:

• 218 landscaping locations;

• 14 container cranes;

• 78,000 feet of wharves;

• 56,115 pilings;

• 26 boats;

• 852 catch basins;

• 29 emergency generators;

• 772 backflow devices;

• 164 water meters;

• 18 miles of crane bus;

• 3 stormwater pump stations;

• 9 sewer pump stations.

“By implementing a state-of-the-art CMMS, the port will achieve integration of business practices, improve work efficiencies by using activity-based costing, develop work schedules, and designate daily work activities, plan work, develop budget and resource needs, and better organize and maintain records,” said a port spokesperson. “This effort will address nearly 75 percent of LA Consulting’s 54 audit recommendations.”

Other critical recommendations, according to the port, include establishing clear performance goals and measures; refocusing on employee recruitment, retention, and retraining, including the hiring of a training officer; educating senior city management of the unique requirements of port operations and staff; enhancing and expanding collaboration with unions; filling long-vacant supervision positions; monitoring worker’s compensation amounts; and establishing performance goals to meet the effort. Several of these recommendations have already been implemented or initiated and will directly benefit Construction and Maintenance Operations.

Implementation of the above and a series of other recommendations (the other 25 percent) to improve the operation of the Construction and Maintenance Division will result in cost savings of $1-2 million per year.

LA Consulting, established in 1993, provides a wide variety of planning, systems, and technology services applied to public agencies and municipalities with an emphasis on systems implementation and technical support for public works operations and maintenance.

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