Sunday, April 10, 2011

Floor Demolition: The Aftermath

Yesterday we had the concrete floor in our brewing area removed.  It took the 6 guys about 9 hours to break up six inches of concrete with wire mesh reinforcement.  During the demolition we realized that once they broke through the concrete they exposed electrical conduit that was laying on top of the sand under the floor.  We told the guys to watch out for the conduit because the electrical wires housed inside were still in use and we didn’t want to have to fix them if they got cut.  

When the demolition team left that night, it seemed like everything was fine.  Some of the plastic conduit had been crushed or broken but there didn’t seem to be any issues with any of the electricity in the building.  Luckily for us we just happen to have an electrician coming in the next day to do some work.  Once he saw the broken conduit he became concerned and took a look in our service panel to inspect for damage.  Of course he found some major problems.  

Between the Bobcats and jackhammers and not re-burying the conduit before continuing to work the demo guys cut through about five or six wires in each of three conduits running under our floor.  We didn’t realize it that night because the cut wires were powering equipment that was not currently in use, like exterior light, air conditioning units, etc.  

It took three days of unearthing existing conduit, digging new trenches and re-running wires and conduit to fix the problem.  The cost of the mistake ended up being just about as much as the floor demolition.  On top of that it also pushed back the work the electrician was here to do by another three days.  The one thing we’ve learned as construction has begun is that you need to watch everything that is being done all the time.

It seems that most contractors with large teams come in and set things up then take off to the next job.  In this case no one from the construction company was supervising the work and although we pointed the electrical issue to the workers they didn’t really care.  We’ll have to work something out with the construction company on the repair bill but it was another lesson learned.

On a bright side, as you may have noticed from the pictures we did get our trench drain set in place this morning before we discovered any of the electrical issues.

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