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NewsCastle - March 2012


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Corps, Los Angeles County break ground for restoration project, surf fence overcomes unforeseen obstacles and bottom line, the investment in our PEOPLE is worth the time!

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NewsCastle - March 2012

  1. 1. NewsCastle Los Angeles District BUILDING STRONGVol. 42 No. 3 A monthly publication of the Los Angeles District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers March 2012Partners:By Jay Field Corps, Los Angeles County break ground for restoration project LOS ANGELES — U.S.Army Corps of Engineers LosAngeles District and Los An-geles County officials brokeground Feb. 22 on a projectdesigned to restore degradedhabitat in the San FernandoValley. Supervisor Zev Yaro-slavsky, Public Works Dep-uty Director Mark Pestrellaand District CommanderCol. Mark Toy ceremoniallyturned dirt for the start ofthe $7 million Tujunga Wash The Tujunga Wash Ecosystem Restoration project (left) will connect to the county’s GreenwayEcosystem Restoration proj- Phase I project (right), just to the south, which was constructed in 2007. When combined with theect that will extend greening Corps’ earlier Greenbelt project, the efforts will create a riparian habitat corridor nearly 2.5 milesalong the sides of a 3/4-mile long, from Sherman Way to Chandler Blvd. (USACE photo by Jay Field)stretch of concrete channelthat carries runoff from Han- channel between Vanowen ian habitat corridor nearly 2.5 Community residents Stansen Dam to the Los Angeles St. and Sherman Way. The miles long. and Lynne Friedman, amongRiver. east bank will be planted “Every segment of this the nearly dozen commu- Corps contractors will with native, drought-tolerant wash that we’ve restored has nity members in attendanceconstruct a meandering perennials and shrubs. The had their neighborhood just at the ceremony, couldn’tmanmade stream, complete restoration project will con- thrilled with the beautifica- have agreed more with Yaro-with native riparian veg- nect to the county’s Tujunga tion,” said Yaroslavsky. “It’s slavsky. They’ve lived alongetation and pedestrian path- Wash Greenway project just just an improvement of theways, on the west bank of the to the south, creating a ripar- quality of life.” — See WASH, page 2 — Imperial Beach surf fence overcomes San Clemente Border Patrol Station District manages more than 250 unforeseen obstacles. Page 2 officially opens. Page 4 recruiting station leases. Page 5
  2. 2. Page 2 NewsCastleSurf fence overcomes unforeseen obstaclesBy Greg Fuderer sea level to within inches of the bottom of the pier, causing a temporary work stoppage for safety reasons. It also scoured IMPERIAL BEACH, Calif. — On a temporary pier 15 feet about five to six feet of beach in the construction area.above the Pacific Ocean, the worker guides a piling toward the In addition to weather and geophysical conditions, thetemplate that will hold it in place for the crane to pound it into contractor also faced some man-made obstacles that impactedthe water below. construction. One after the other, the pilings wend their way 300 feet out “The design requires the contractor to drive the piles to ainto the ocean, completing the westernmost extension of the certain depth,” to ensure stability and longevity, Mesa said.border fence that separates Mexico and the United States. “There are remnants of the previous border fence, and there The work presents a unique set of conditions markedly are layers of clay beneath the sand. Both make it difficult todifferent from constructing the segments of the fence that are drive the piles and keep them in alignment.”on land. Robert Landreth is the project superintendent for Granite “It’s different working in a surf zone,” said Chuck Mesa, a Construction Company. He said the work is an ongoingcoastal engineer with the Corps’ Los Angeles District. “You struggle, with the surf and debris from the old fence making ithave to work with tides and sediment transport. The beach difficult at times to maintain the alignment.will change over time, and that affects project design and “We’ve never built a fence out over the sea before, so we haveconstruction.” to work with the design,” he said. “We have high surf, and the There are winter storms, one of which, Mesa said, raised the old fence forms debris at different elevations and is directly in line with where we’re placing this one.” The 40-foot pilings are prepped, sandblasted, coated, and wrapped in fiber to give them a 30-year life expectancy. Compensating for the old fence and clay layers at times impacts the speed at which the pilings can be installed and their alignment and depth. Workers use levels to ensure the pilings are vertical. “Other than that, the process is running very smoothly,” Landreth said. Seung Yoo, the Corps’ construction rep for the project, said the surf fence project is essentially composed of two parts, the final 500 feet on land and an additional 300 feet into the Pacific Ocean. Yoo said when piling placement is completed, the contractor will grout the pilings and remove the temporary pier, in advanceThe temporary pier enabled the contractor to overcome obstacles of environmental restrictions that protect endangered speciesunique to working in a surf zone. (USACE photo by Greg Fuderer) in the area. ban area of the valley. wildlife movement, recreation Wash from Page 1 “That water will eventually and education, none of which someday become part of the will reduce the capacity of thethe barren channel for nearly outdoors,” said Toy. “We have drinking water here in LA,” flood control system.40 years. so much momentum right said Pestrella. “It’ll also help The Corps is funding 75 “We’re pretty excited about now with the LA River Water- us with pollution issues. As percent of the project coststhe project,” Stan said. “We shed, not only with America’s pollution reaches the channel under its Continuing Authori-think it’s a great idea.” Great Outdoors Initiative, and we bring the water up onto ties Program, Section 1135 of “It’ll be nice to look out but the Urban Waters Federal the top of the channel, it’s re- the Water Resources Devel-at and take a walk in,” added Partnership Program.” charged eliminating a number opment Act, that allows im-Lynne. Both programs share goals of pollutants before it reaches provement of the quality of Toy told the residents and that include reconnecting our groundwater again.” the environment in the publiccounty partners in the audi- people to their waterways Tujunga Wash was chan- interest. Los Angeles Countyence that the project will ef- and promoting water conser- nelized in the 1950’s curb- Flood Control District, whichfectively combine flood risk vation. ing flooding in the develop- operates and maintains themanagement with ecosystem According to Pestrella, the ing area, but also halting the wash, will fund the remainingrestoration and recreation. project brings multiple ben- wash’s natural function. Some 25 percent of the total project “We owe this to you, to cre- efits that will serve as a model of that function will be re- costs. Construction is sched-ate a community that you can for a sustainable and healthy stored, providing opportuni- uled to be completed thiswalk down and enjoy the great stream system in a dense, ur- ties for migratory bird nesting, summer.March 2012
  3. 3. March 2012 Page 3 COMMANDER’S MESSAGEDear District Teammates, 3. Performance: Briefly summarize an employee’s As you all know by now, in Los Angeles we are “Building performance (The rater should have addressed performanceStrong and Taking Care of People!” This motto embodies in depth with quantifiable comments in the TAPES form; thethis command’s commitment to our military and Department senior rater can provide more general comments).of the Army Civilians (DACs) and the idea 4. School: What additional training orthat PEOPLE come “first” in our organization. schooling should the employee receive to moveNot only do PEOPLE come first, PEOPLE are up in the organization?the foundation for everything we do! If you 5. Potential: What is the employee’s potentialremember from our PEOPLE, TRAINING, and for continued service and what job is the nextFACILITIES triangle, one of the basic building step for continued growth?blocks in the PEOPLE initiatives is performance Effective senior rater bullet comments aremanagement. For the senior leaders in the shown below:district, we recently finished writing and 1. Mr. Alex Jones is the best employee of thesubmitting our performance evaluations for all 10 DACs whom I rate.of the employees in our rating chain. However, 2. Promote now to GS-14.completing the written portion of the TAPES 3. Outstanding performance managing aevaluation is only half of the process. In my $300,000 construction program.opinion, the second half of the process is the 4. Send immediately to the Armymost important part; that is, a face-to-face Management Staff College; he will excel.counseling with the rated employee. 5. Superior potential; without question, a As raters and senior raters, it is so important to give future district division chief.meaningful and constructive feedback to our employees. Currently, I am in the middle of counseling all 23 of theRaters should focus on an individual’s “performance” and military and DACs whom I senior rate. Although the processsenior raters should focus on an individual’s “potential.” In is taking a long time to complete, I am thoroughly enjoyinggeneral, I feel that raters are doing a good job in evaluating the constructive dialogue with each of my senior ratees.employee performance; however, all too often, senior raters Moreover, I am learning so much about each employee onare “disconnected” and are not providing adequate feedback both a personal and professional level. As your Commander,to their subordinates. Therefore, I offer a few guidelines I urge each and every one of you to make “performancethat each of our senior leaders should address when writing management” a priority. Bottom line, the investment in oureffective senior rater comments: PEOPLE is worth the time! 1. Enumeration: Where does the employee rank withrespect to all of the employees that are senior rated? Warm Regards, 2. Promotion: Should the employee be promoted to thenext higher grade? COL Toy Corps of Engineers BUILDING STRONG ® ® Los Angeles District and Taking Care of People! District Commander: Col. R. Mark Toy The NewsCastle is published monthly under the provisions of AR 360- 1 for the employees and extended Engineer Family of the Los Angeles Public Affairs Officer: Jay Field District, USACE. Editor: Dave Palmer Views and opinions expressed herein are not necessarily those of the District or of the Department of Defense. Staff: Jennie Ayala, Daniel J. Calderón, Greg Fuderer, Brooks O. Hubbard IV, Address mail to the Los Angeles District Public Affairs Office, ATTN: Richard Jung, Kim Matthews NewsCastle Editor P.O. Box 532711, Los Angeles, CA 90017-2325 Administrative Assistant: Beverly Patterson Tel: (213) 452-3922 or Fax: (213) 452-4209. E-mail the Public Affairs staff at: NewsCastle
  4. 4. Page 4 NewsCastleBorder Patrol dedicates new facility in San ClementeBy Greg Fuderer SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. — Following a 12-month, $6.3million construction project, U.S. Customs and BorderProtection officially opened its new administration buildingat San Clemente Border Patrol Station with a Feb. 10 ribboncutting ceremony. The 14,000 square-foot, single story office and administrationbuilding has locker facilities for 189 agents and can accommodateup to 250 agents, if necessary. The structure includes 24 offices,a conference room, a muster/training room, a kitchen and aweight room. The Ross Group, of Tulsa, Okla., performed thedesign-build contract that included a new half-acre parking lotand a water storage tank. “The Ross Group did an excellent job of overcoming Alfaro Gonzales (right), the patrol agent in charge, cuts the rib-many challenges during the design and construction phases bon marking the completion of construction of the San Clementeand completed the project with minimum delay,” said Greg Border Patrol Station along Interstate 5 just north of U.S. MarineBoghossian, who managed the project for the U.S. Army Corps Corps Base Camp Pendleton. The station is one of eight in the Sanof Engineers Los Angeles District, which oversaw design and Diego Sector, which stretches along the Mexican border from theconstruction of the facility. Pacific Ocean to Imperial County and north to Los Angeles and Riv- The San Diego Resident Office and resident engineer Julie erside County. (USACE photo by Greg Boghossian)Martinez performed the construction quality control. “Her team did an outstanding job of managing day-to-day patrol stations. It doesn’t get any bigger than San Clementeconstruction activities for this project,” Boghossian said. Station.” Boghossian said other members of the project team, including Border Patrol agents conduct vehicle inspections on theContracting, Finance and the Engineering Construction and highway next to the station, but Gonzales said it is impracticalSupport Office from the Fort Worth District were an integral to conduct them continuously because of the impact on traffic.part of success of this project. Gonzales said success with traditional enforcement methods Alfaro Gonzales, the patrol agent in charge at the San has led smugglers to increase their offshore attempts. SmugglersClemente Border Patrol Station, said the station is one of eight often use 20-40 foot, open-hulled fishing boats, often goingin the San Diego Sector, which stretches along the Mexican more than 100 miles out to sea to avoid detection.border from the Pacific Ocean to Imperial County and north to “So now we use ocean and coastal enforcement also,”Los Angeles and Riverside County. Gonzales said. “Our responsibility is much greater than it was “Our main focus is to target smugglers along the San Diego two or three years ago.”to Los Angeles corridor,” Gonzales said. “The 5 is one of the Gonzales said agents have seized 20,000 lbs marijuana so farbusiest freeways in the nation. We’re the big daddy of border this year, surpassing last year’s total, and that smuggling events on water are up 42 percent. “We expect to double last year’s apprehensions of 3,000 illegal aliens,” he said. The San Clemente Station serves a critical function in maintaining the nation’s border security. It has grown from a trailer on the side of the highway to a modern structure from which agents coordinate their activities to combat the smuggling of humans and contraband. “When I started here in 1985, we worked out of a single-wide trailer,” Gonzales said. Over the years, the office grew to a triple- wide but fell far short of providing a safe, functional working environment for the agents. “I leaned over to pick up some paper off the ground, and my hand went through the trailer wall,” Gonzales said. HeConstruction on the 12-month, $6.3 million San Clemente Border doesn’t expect to experience anything similar with the newPatrol Station project is seen in its early stages. The Ross Group administration building.worked closely with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to modify “For us to get quality of this type is very much appreciated,”design of the 14,000 square-foot, single story office and adminis- Gonzales said. “It’s like a festive mood because of the building,tration building to meet the agency’s needs. (USACE photo by Greg like a new beginning. It’s clean, well-built, but not expensive.Boghossian) We’ve put the money we have to very good use. This is refreshing.”March 2012
  5. 5. March 2012 Page 5Corps and recruiters open new career center in Santa Clarita station to station to process into the military,” said Richardson. Like most real estate principles, location played a big part in the selection of the mall as the site for the career center. “Right behind it is the food court, so it’s easier for people to see the space,” said Dustin Ku, Corps realty specialist. “All their business is walk-in traffic, so foot traffic is most important.” Each service has its own storefront, whereas in many locations they’re co-located with a single entrance. For cost savings, they share a common area behind. The recruiters recently moved from their original location in a small strip mall three-and-a-half miles away in Canyon Country. Realty specialists said the lengthy relocation process included market research, locating suitable properties and requesting proposals from property owners before the Corps and recruiters selected the Valencia Town Center mall as the home of the new recruiting station. “This new career center is a great example of how theRecruiters representing the four services use a saber to cut a cake Corps is ‘Building Strong and Taking Care of People’, ” said celebration of the grand opening of a new Armed Forces Career Col. Steve Sigloch, Los Angeles District deputy commander.Center. (USACE photo by Jay Field) “Delivering quality facilities is key to recruiting and retaining the high quality service members we need in today’s ArmedBy Jay Field Forces.” SANTA CLARITA, Calif. — Nearly 100 future service The Los Angeles District manages more than 250 recruitingmembers took the Oath of Enlistment Feb. 24 in a roped off station leases throughout Southern California, Arizona andparking lot of the Westfield Valencia Town Center mall in Nevada, as part of the Department of Defense Recruitingfront of the Armed Forces’ newest Career Center. Facilities Program. The leases are valued at more than $30 The future Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines stood million and cover nearly 650,000 square feet of space, roughlyat attention and raised their right hands as a Marine Corps three-fourths the size of the Los Angeles Convention Center.captain led them in reciting the oath before family, friendsand dignitaries gathered for the event. “We have a long tradition in our community of service to ourcountry through the men and women and their families whocall Santa Clarita their home,” said Laurie Ender, Santa Claritamayor. “The opening of the new Armed Forces Career Centerensures that future generations will continue this serviceand carry on the values of honor, loyalty and commitmentto our country, so well exemplified by your parents and yourgrandparents. The opening of the career center also featured an Air ForceJROTC color guard and a choir from nearby Valencia HighSchool, as well as a dazzling array of equipment on display,including audio-visual laden Hummers, a mock jet fighter anda climbing wall. The 5,147 square foot career center features facilities for Los Angeles District realty specialists Dustin Ku, LaShawn Rich-all four services, with the Army getting the most space to ardson and Royal Cochran pose for a photo at the grand openingaccommodate its Pinnacle design, according to Corps realty of the Santa Clarita Armed Forces Career Center at the Westfieldspecialist LaShawn Richardson. Valencia Town Center Feb. 24. Richardson received a memento “They consolidate all their substations into one big station of the event from the Los Angeles Recruiting Battalion. (USACEso that they can just process you here, instead of going from photo by Jay Field) Hope you “Like” us on Facebook @ NewsCastle
  6. 6. Page 6 NewsCastleCorps to build $100 million water treatment plantBy Brooks O. Hubbard IV BARSTOW, Calif. — TheU.S. Army Corps of EngineersLos Angeles District andthe Barstow Chamberof Commerce held anIndustry Day at the BarstowCommunity College in effortsto attract potential localcontractors for a $100-$120million water plant for FortIrwin and National TrainingCenter Feb. 22. The facility is expectedto provide more than fivemillion gallons of water perday to the inhabitants ofthe NTC with constructionbeginning this summer. Fort Irwin GarrisonCommander Col. KurtPinkerton welcomed theattending contractors andspoke to them about the needfor the new facility. “What I wanted to dowhen we first met with theCorps was ensure that we hada quality product that wasbuilt,” said Pinkerton. “Butas important to me was to try Potential contractors inspect one of the Fort Irwin water booster stations. The U.S. Army Corps ofand figure out a way to keep Engineers and the Barstow Chamber of Commerce held an Industry Day at the Barstow Communityit [project related jobs] in the College in efforts to attract potential local contractors for a $100 million water plant for Fort Irwin andlocal community.” National Training Center Feb. 22. (USACE photo by Brooks O. Hubbard) According to Pinkerton,50,000 soldiers train at the The three-year construction 99.6 percent water recovery everybody together and givecenter annually and 85 project will replace the current rate,” said Seybold. “EDR an advanced understandingpercent of the permanently multi-treatment system as separates contaminants of what the job is about,” saidassigned community live on well as use new technologies from clean water through an Gary Silverman, director ofthe post, which adds up to a to process the water to meet electrochemical process.” design engineering, Filancvery significant amount of state and federal standards. The current process uses Construction. “This [Industrywater consumed and used for Lt. Col. Joseph Seybold, the reverse osmosis to treat Day site tour] gives us a chanceday-to-day operations. water treatment plant project drinkable water, and is one to give some thought into how “The WTP (water manager with the U.S. Army of three water systems in to propose in a responsibletreatment plant) is critical to Corps of Engineers, said Fort operation at the post. way.”the life span of the NTC,” said Irwin requires the process Immediately after the The project also includesPinkerton. to have a minimum 99.6 project introduction and water system improvement The post population will percent water recovery rate overview session, attending and supporting utilities andincrease to 95 percent, but necessary to conserve as much contractors got a firsthand infrastructure of the final as possible of the area’s limited look at the current systems All information concerningphase of family housing water resources. and equipment. project milestones andcan’t be done until the water “The new WTP will utilize “I think this is a great effort proposal information can betreatment plant is completed a single water electrodialysis on the part of the Barstow found at the Federal Businessto provide water to the reversal technology to purify Chamber of Commerce and Opportunities websiteadditional housing. the water to achieve the post’s Fort Irwin facility to get ( 2012
  7. 7. March 2012 Page 7 EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITYBlack Women in American Culture and History celebrated Black Employment Special Emphasis Program committee chose a woman as keynote speaker who exemplifies service to family and community. Carolynn Martin introduces herself as a mother, grandmother and community activist of 40 years. She is the current president of the Los Angeles View Park Section of the National Council of Negro Women. “Our founder envisioned an organization of organizations… we have 240 sections worldwide,” said Martin. “However, we have 28 affiliate organizations that are part of our organization. The idea was not to re-invent the wheel, we wanted to have a platform so all women’s organizations could speak.” NCNW was founded in 1935 by Mary McLeod Bethune a child of slave parents who distinguished herself as an educator and consultant while serving on FDR’s Black Cabinet. “For us at View Park, our signature programs are HIV prevention and education for women and girls and a program that I love, the Phoenix Leadership Academy for girls.” The Phoenix Leadership Academy is a summer program for girls ages 8 to 13. The academy’s stated purpose is to develop leadership skills while focusing on prevention of juvenile crime, disease, teen pregnancy and enhancing academic achievement. Martin handed out a flier for her section’s next big event, “Rock the Red Pumps”, which is part of the National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day Campaign on March 10. According to the CDC, the estimated rate of new HIV infections for black women is more than 15 times as high as the rate for white women, and more than three times as high as that of Latina women. “The funding for HIV prevention, STD prevention, unplanned pregnancy (prevention) is almost nothing in California,” said Martin. “Those are the subjects that we talk about and why we do ‘Rock the Red Pumps’ to attract youngCarolynn Martin current president of the View Park Section of the women, because you know, a message from a young woman toNational Council of Negro Women speaks at the District’s Black another young woman might be more effective.”History Month observance Feb. 23. (USACE photo by Dave Palmer) Martin made it clear that volunteers of all races and genders are welcome, stating that their programs have a positiveBy Dave Palmer impact on all of society; it’s the community working for the LOS ANGELES — In his proclamation for this year’s community.National African American History Month, President Barack On the theme, District Commander Col. Mark Toy said thatObama stated that the achievements of African American this year’s campaign really resonated with him. He describedwomen are not limited to what has been recorded or retold in the person he considered to be the most influential leader ofour history books. his career… a strong, African American woman. “Their impact is felt in communities where they are quiet “For me, that battalion commander who was my bestheroes who care for their families, in boardrooms where battalion commander was Lt. Col. Yvonne Prettyman-Beck,”they are leaders of industry, in laboratories where they are said Toy. “When you think about what we’re doing here in Losdiscovering new technologies, and in classrooms where they Angeles, the motto that we have, ‘Building Strong and Takingare preparing the next generation for the world they will Care of People’, I have to say that idea about taking care ofinherit,” said Obama. people had its infancy with Lt. Col. Prettyman-Beck and how For the Los Angeles District’s observance held Feb. 23, the she treated me. She showed me what right looked like.” Downloading the NewsCastle from home? Visit NewsCastle
  8. 8. Page 8 NewsCastle BUILDING WELLNESSBread is the #1 culprit of daily salt intakeBy Cecy Ordonez 70 percent of the population LOS ANGELES - The is either middle-aged, elderly,Centers for Disease Control or African-American andand Prevention released should consume less thannew findings on Feb. 7 1,500 milligrams of sodiumthat included a list of the per day. But, the averagetop 10 sources of sodium American gets more thanin the American diet. The twice the recommendedsurprising find is that bread daily dose of sodium - 3,466and rolls are the number one milligrams of sodium per day!source of salt, accounting for This translates to many of usmore than twice the sodium being at risk of raising ourof salty junk foods like potato blood pressure which in turnschips! Even more surprising makes us dangerously at riskis that the salty junk food for heart disease, stroke, and(pretzels, chips and popcorn) kidney disease. T:7 inis actually at the bottom of What can you do?the list! Start by reading the Although the amount of nutritional fact labels. Whensodium per slice of bread is you go grocery shopping, stayless than a serving of potato on the outer perimeter ofchips, Americans tend to the grocery store where theconsume more bread on natural foods are: vegetables,a daily basis which then fruit, meat and dairy. Eatadds to our daily salt intake. less processed food. If youBasic U.S. dietary guidelines are using canned vegetablesrecommend that adults get or beans, rinse them withless than 2,300 milligrams of water before cooking. Smallsodium each day. These basic changes in our daily routineguidelines apply to less than can add to a better-feeling,a third of Americans because more energized, healthier you.March 2012
  9. 9. March 2012 Page 9 SAFETY What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome? By Steve McCombs associated with CTS. If left untreated and the stressors not LOS ANGELES —This annoying little condition has been removed, CTS can severely damage your hand. Ergo, you need around now for decades, but often it doesn’t get much press. to know the ways to avoid it. So I thought I’d put on my “science guy” hat and give you a The best thing to do to avoid CTS is to have a good posture layman’s lesson. You definitely want to avoid this problem, so in your wrists while you are typing. The second illustration, have a good look! bottom right, is just one way – but the point is to Unlike Carpool Tunnel Syndrome (which is keep your wrists straight! This helps relieve the when you and your co-workers are stuck in traffic at pressure. Frequent stretching and changing to other the I-10 and PCH merge) Carpal Tunnel Syndrome activities is also of benefit. Secondly, listen to your (CTS) is an ergonomic injury to one of the three body. If you start having symptoms, don’t wait until nerves that run down into your hand. Check out it becomes unbearable. Stop and get in touch with the anatomy picture, bottom left. your friendly neighborhood safety bubba! We are As you can see, the Median Nerve runs through here to help – “Safety Strong, People Always” – asel Syndrome some of the structures in your wrist. Notice those our motto goes. We can check out your workstation tendons right next to the Median Nerve? Well, and point you in the right direction, and are both those tendons and the nerve go through the “Carpal FACT SHEET 88-001-0311 happy and honored to do so. Tunnel” to which the syndrome refers. Each time Now, this little article is not meant to be the you move your wrist around, those tendons also move. This is “end-all, be-all” on this subject. It’s just a little poke to get normal body function. you thinking. So, for a very good read let me take you to the What usually happens in CTS cases is the wrist is bent National Institutes of Health website on the subject at: http:// nerve caused by a sustained time (like typing backwards for extended periods of increase in all day on, or inflammation. your wristscommonly structures inside a keyboard with CTS is bent) and the Take 10 minutes out of your day and read the whole article. the tunnel become irritated and inflamed due to repeat You might just save yourself or your co-workers an avoidable keletal disorder (WMSD).andcan lead of the impinges movement. This irritation It inflammation also Set the top to case of “I-Do-Not-Like-This.”operly. on the Median Nerve, causing the pain and tingling sensation monitor screen at seated eye height directly And, as always, drive safe, drive sober and buckle up! in front of you. If you perform frequent typing, use a document holder to minimize neck strain. To prevent eyestrain, eliminate glare by positioning the monitorour at a 90-degree angle to the windows. Minimize glare from the overhead lighting by tilting the screen. Keep your hands and wrists in line with your forearms, not bent up or down or to one side. Avoid resting your forearms or wrists onnel sharp edges, which puts pressure on your underlying nerves, blood vessels, and muscles. of but The front of your chair’s seat pan should have a waterfall design that s rounds over to eliminate pressure on the backal of the knees. Pressure here will impair blood flow causing swelling, discomfort, and possibly varicose veins. dle Your feet should be firmly planted on the floor or footrest. Otherwise, the weighttral of your lower leg puts pressure on the back of your knees and increases stress on your lower back. Unsupported feet may cause you to sit forward in your chair to reach the floor, making the backrest ineffective. NewsCastleg the tendon sheaths (tubular sacs should be able to sit comfortably in your You around Armrests should be height and width adjustable to Frequently change positions and adjust
  10. 10. Page 10 NewsCastleUSACE celebrates National Engineer Week with school outreachBy Tracy RobillardSavannah District SAVANNAH, Ga. —Members of the U.S. ArmyCorps of Engineers SavannahDistrict visited JenkinsHigh School as part ofthe nationally-recognizedEngineer Week observance,Feb. 23. The purpose of the visitwas to inform students of thewide array of career optionsrelated to math and science,and to encourage them topursue college educationsand seek employment asengineers of the future. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Park Ranger David Quebedeaux of the J. Strom Thurmond Dam and Lake Lt. Col. David London project explains wildlife management practices to Jenkins High School students in Savannah, Ga.,gave an enthusiastic welcome Feb. 23. Quebedeaux’s visit was part of the Corps of Engineers’ initiative to inform students of thepresentation to each group of wide array of career options related to math and science, and to encourage them to pursue collegestudents throughout the day. educations and seek employment as engineers of the future. (USACE photo by George Jumara)He gave examples of projectsthe Corps of Engineers engineering. The team Savannah region, while in Energy and Environmentalis involved in---from the brought in a large, interactive learning about geology Design (LEED) rating system.Savannah Harbor to military flood-plain model from the and the Savannah Harbor The National Engineerconstruction to cleanup of Corps’ Jacksonville District. Expansion Project. They saw Week observance celebratesformerly-used defense sites. Equipped with storm sound deer antlers, animal pelts and the positive contributions The students rotated effects and flowing water, the forest items while learning engineers make to societythrough various stations model demonstrates various about natural resource and is a catalyst for outreachthat highlighted math and flood damage prevention management at the Corps’ across the country to kids andscience careers at the Corps- techniques. dam and lake projects. They adults alike. Engineers Week-hydraulics and hydrology, Students got to hold tested their knowledge on is part of many corporate andgeology, natural resources, sample pieces from the a “checklist” of sustainable government cultures andmaster planning, sustainable Floridian Aquifer, a source building features while is celebrated on every U.S.building design, and electrical of drinking water for the learning about the Leadership engineering college campus. Project manager supports presidential visit Jonathan Stratton, a project manager in the Los Angeles District’s Military Projects Branch, stands in front of Marine One at Phoenix Sky Harbor during President Obama’s visit in late January 2012. Stratton is an Air Force reserve officer with the 161 Air Re- fueling Wing, which provided logistic support for the presidential motorcade. (Photo courtesy of Chief Master Sgt. David Castro)March 2012
  11. 11. March 2012 Page 11 SECURITY NewsCastle
  12. 12. Page 12 NewsCastle AROUND THE DISTRICTCorps continues Building Strong in ArizonaBy Daniel J. Calderón PHOENIX — The U.S.Army Corps of Engineers LosAngeles District is movingahead with several projectsin Arizona after receivingfunding in the new budget. The Santa Cruz RiverWatershed project is oneproject in the central Arizonaregion which received$150,000 as part of the Energyand Water DevelopmentAppropriations Act, 2012,Division B of Public Law 112-74, Investigations, NationalPrograms, FloodplainManagement Servicesallocation. Kim Gavigan,P.E., CFM, a supervisory civilengineer for the District anda National Pilot ProgramManager for the Corps, saidthe study will be conductedas part of the U.S. Army The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District received $340,000 to continue the Little Colo-Corps of Engineers Flood rado River at Winslow Feasibility Study. The study is designed to investigate alternatives for reducingPlain Management Services the flood risk to the Winslow Community. (USACE photo by Daniel J. Calderón)Program. “The objective of the FPMS Mexico border, the District Corps received $340,000 to Year 2013 and formulate aProgram is to foster public has received $2.53 million continue the Little Colorado preliminary array of flood riskunderstanding of the options to construct the bridge on River at Winslow Feasibility management alternatives.”for dealing with flood hazards old Tucson Highway across Study. The study is designed The study area includesand to promote prudent the Nogales Wash and to to investigate alternatives for approximately 25 squareuse and management of the construct the channel just reducing the flood risk to the miles of land area and 18Nation’s flood plains,” he upstream. Winslow Community. The miles of the LCR mainstem.said. “The study will begin In 2010, The Santa Cruz study area includes the City of Levee failure is complicatedwith basic data collection and County Board of Supervisors Winslow and the mainstem by reduced channel capacity,stakeholder coordination to voted unanimously to of the Little Colorado River sediment deposition and saltcharacterize the relative flood transition the Nogales Flood from the confluence with cedar growth.risk in the Lower Santa Cruz Risk Management Project to Chevelon Creek downstream Throughout ArizonaRiver Watershed.” early termination; however, to the northern end of the and across the District, The District will conduct the District is moving Winslow Levee. each project represents anthe study this year and will be forward to replace the bridge “The study is important opportunity for the District tocollecting existing floodplain it removed during the course because the existing Winslow take care of the people in themanagement related data of the work. Once the bridge levee has been decertified,” project’s or study’s affectedfrom Federal, State, County, is complete, residents and said Rich Legere, water area. Assets managed byand local entities such businesses in the area will resource planner for the the Corps, valued at moreas hydrology, hydraulic have easier access to the District. “The levee has than $165 billion, generatemodeling, historical flood main road and to emergency failed twice in the past. American jobs, facilitaterecords, and other relevant services. With this funding, we’re imports and exports, anddata. In a city made famous by able to continue our studies contribute to a stronger In Nogales, on the U.S./ a song from The Eagles, the unconstrained into Fiscal economy.March 2012
  13. 13. March 2012 Page 13 Kevin Inada Golf Tournament Date: March 16, 2012 Time: 9:00 AM In honor and memory of our good friend and colleague, Kevin Inada, we are holding a tournament in his name at Griffith Parks Wilson Golf Course. This tournament will raise money for the Engineer Day Picnic but, you can also contribute money separately from this event to the American Heart Association in Kevins name. The entry fee will be $50.00 for each person to walk. We will have a low gross score and a "closest to the Pin" trophy. The hole will be chosen at the discretion of the chairman. To RSVP for the event please contact: Dan Sulzer, 213-452-3784 (First sign-up cutoff Mar. 5) NewsCastle
  14. 14. Page 14 NewsCastle FINAL WORDIs my music really part of “the oldies” now?By Daniel J. Calderón and real performers and wonder how vapid imitators took center stage with little more than glorified karaoke skills. I If anyone out there hasn’t heard the song, “1985” by can understand that point.Bowling for Soup, stop for just a few minutes and find it on Others would argue that music has to change to remainYouTube. Go ahead. I’ll wait for you right here. Found it? current. They might say that Selena Gomez, LMFAO andListened to the words? Just the tune and turned it Justin Bieber are the way forward. They mightoff? Hmmm. Well, you have to listen to the words. further argue that Madonna, Elton John and RickThey matter for this one. Go on and listen again. Springfield should take their Geritol (or is EnsureGot it? The words, too? Cool. Let’s move on. the “it” drink of the elderly now?) and just quietly Sorry to those of you who have heard the song. observe the music scene they were once a part ofI wanted to make sure everyone was on the same as it moves farther and farther beyond them. Ipage. can understand the point of progress. Not long ago, I was talking with my kids and However, for me, the way is somewhere in thetheir friends. We were at the house and I was middle. I guess I’m more of a Rush thinker (fromplaying some tunes. I think it was some Journey their song, “Free Will”) in that I believe “If youthat came on and one of my son’s friends remarked choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.”how his parents liked oldies too. That statement I think if you choose not to pick anything, you’vestopped me in the middle of whatever I was doing chosen poorly. One of our basic skills as people isat the time. I turned and looked. I think my kids knew to decide our own fate; and, one of the basic tenets of beingsomething was up since I had been talking about something a thinking individual is to accept the results of those choices.else when he said that. I choose to hang on (much like the Bellamy Brothers’ “Old “That’s Journey,” I said. “Those aren’t oldies.” Hippie”) to the old and tentatively embrace the new. I will “Well,” my son replied in defense of his friend, “It’s oldies keep, for the most part, the music from before 1990 us.” I hear a lot coming from my kids’ iPods and most of it does It wasn’t a smart-aleck (because this is a family publication) sound like tone deaf yowling cats with some kind of bowelremark. It was an honest one and it made me think. Journey’s distemper. Some of it is pretty good, though. I’ll admit I won’t“Escape” album (back when there were actually albums) buy a modern (that’s a funny word for me to use) albumcame out in 1981. 1981 was more than 30 years ago. When -- mainly because I can’t buy an album anymore. If I wantI was a kid, songs like “Rock around the Clock,” “Johnny B recent music, I have to buy a CD.Goode” and “The Wanderer,” which had all come out in the I guess nowadays, I can get online and just buy individual50s and 60s, were considered oldies. My son pointed out that, songs. I understand the value of that… benefit, I guess isat the time, they were usually between 25 and 35 years old. the word that I’m supposed to use. But, I miss having littleHoly Irony, Batman! My music fell within that range. surprises on albums. I miss hearing songs that the radio I thought about other music I listened to with my kids didn’t just play and play and play until I got tired of hearing– Lynyrd Skynyrd, Queen, Abba, CCR, Styx, Journey, Huey it. I miss discovering the little gem that didn’t really see theLewis, Prince and an array of other musicians and groups light of day. I think that’s missing in the “buy one song at afrom my youth. I thought about dances I used to go to when I time” online experience.was younger and fashions that were in at the time. I thought So, I hold on to the music of my youth. Like almostabout the movies, the stars of the day and I realized they were anything seen through the proper glass, the past (musicallyright. My music had fallen into (by accepted definition) the speaking) does seem idyllic in comparison with what’s outrealm of oldies. It was but to laugh. there today. With good music, I can recall good memories. I got to thinking of the way of things in the world. I My past isn’t perfect; but, it’s mine. It’s where I lived, wherethought about my choices and my paths in life since songs I grew up, where I learned to be the person I am now. I’mmy kids call oldies were my “top 40” hits. Just over the past not perfect, but I am proud of where I was, where I am and I30 years, the music has changed considerably. I could be an am curious to see where I will be. I’ll keep an ear out for any“old fogie”(do kids today even know that term?) and just put little tunes that might catch my attention and add them toa blanket statement out that all the music nowadays isn’t as my aural list.good as it was then. For some, that would be a perfectly valid If I don’t, I run the risk of not only “watching the wheels,”idea. but getting run over by them. Progress happens whether Some folks would completely agree Lady Gaga, or synthetic we like it or not. Change is the only constant and how we“music” put out by Disney’s latest created star isn’t up to the can integrate the new with the familiar goes a long way tostandards set by the Rolling Stones, Van Morrison or even determining how happy we’ll be with the present in theVan Halen. They’d lament over the dearth of true musicians future. Just a thought…March 2012
  15. 15. March 2012 NewsCastle