Mail shark case study


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Mail shark case study

  1. 1. March 30, 2013 “Taking the Bite out of Power Outages”READING ELECTRIC, in conjunction with Mail Shark, provides thisinformation as an educational service to the Region’s Industrial andCommercial Businesses.Mail Shark ( is a recognized leader providingnationwide printing and mailing services, specializing in specific industrymarketing plans. Mail Shark’s clients rely on constant weekly delivery ofdirect mail advertising to ensure their business growth. Mail Shark’s portfolioincludes but is not limited to direct mail campaigns, printing of menus,brochures, postcards, magnets, and a variety of other promotional pieces.Critical Power Problem IdentificationSatisfying the marketing and promotional needs of a nationwide customerbase that relies on the design, printing and mailing of their marketingprograms without interruption on 24/7/365 basis requires excellence inproject planning, implementation and operation. This level of customercommitment requires reliable electric utility service for Mail Shark to provide100% certainty of their production schedules.Located in the middle of the Nolde Forest in Mohnton Pennsylvania, MailShark is faced with high vulnerability to power outages. It was critical thatMail Shark had a quality back-up electrical service plan.As the seasonal storms seemed to increase in strength, the frequency andduration of power outages became untenable for Mail Shark. The cost oflosing production for a one (1) week period equates to about $50,000 inimmediate losses. The greater impact of customer dissatisfaction, while hardto calculate, is very real. Short term power outages of just a couple of hourswere very disruptive to manufacturing operations and greatly impactedprofitability due to overtime, waste and expediting charges.If Mail Shark lost power for one week twice a year, the profit losses over 10years would equate to 1 million dollars. More importantly, millions of dollarswould be at risk due to unsatisfied customers seeking business fromcompetitors. Mail Shark President, Brian Johnson, decided to implement aplan to eliminate the negative impacts of power outagesThe decision was made to investigate upgrading the emergency standbygenerator system to carry the current full loads of manufacturing operations,IT Support Systems, and planned future expansions.Page 1 of 4
  2. 2. Critical Power Problem SolutionA six (6) month investigation and analysis provided the Mail Shark Team withsufficient information to embark upon the project phase of budget analysis,appropriation approval, and ordering of an emergency standby powersystem. In October 2012, the Contract was signed. This project installationphase required two (2) months for completion which included equipmentdelivery.Initially, a study was completed to determine ifplacing small individual backup generators toserve specific equipment would be viable. In thefinal analysis it was deemed a more reliable andcost effective solution to design and install a fullservice generator into the main utility feed.The solution that evolved over this periodresulted in a Standby Power System thatconsisted of: 250 Kw diesel powered generatorwith a sub-base fuel tank for 48 hours ofruntime, new 800 amp Service Entrance ratedtransfer switch, and a remote annunciator panelwhich mimics the generator control panelalarms. This equipment was to be installedoutdoors and would provide the entire 800 ampservice meeting the current requirements. Thissolution would provide Mail Shark with four ‘9s’capability.The ROI is expected to be less than one (1)year. The Standby Power System would pay foritself after only ten (10) days of lost productionavoidance The System is currently sized for65% loading. It was also decided to purchasethe System from a local Company (ReadingElectric) to avoid response time issues.Implementation and Associated Issues:As with any complex Solution, there weredozens of details that needed to have specialfocus to ensure success of the Program in termsof performance and schedule. These detailswere: 1) Project Management Team consisting of decision makers at Mail Shark, George H. Longenecker & Sons, and Reading Electric. 2) Real-time status meetings with virtual Electronic Meetings / communications as required. 3) Advance review and pre-approval from Local Municipality for Permits. 4) Offsite Equipment Testing before shipment & installation at the Mail Shark Facility to avoid potential start-up problems.Page 2 of 4
  3. 3. Implementation and Associated Issues (continued): 5) Detailed installation and test schedules. George H. Longenecker & Sons was selected for the on-site installer of the equipment. a. Site Preparation b. Equipment Placement c. Mechanical d. Electric e. System Testing 6) Detailed plan and schedule for commissioning and tie-in to the Facility systems.The Program time line was: Equipment Delivery - 5 weeks Installation - 2 weeks Planned Commissioning & Tie-in – 4 hoursCareful coordination among Mail Shark, GeorgeH. Longenecker & Sons and Reading ElectricPersonnel resulted in a Tie-In that did not impactprinting operations. Commissioning andAcceptance Testing were scheduled in advance,safeguarding Mail Shark’s operations.Commissioning took place in December 2012and this commissioning included operationaltesting where “loss of utility” conditions weresimulated.Emergency System testingSince commissioning, the EmergencyPower Standby system has not beentested as yet by nature, but Mail Sharkhas put in place a bi-weekly test of thesystem. These tests do not fully transferall loads to the Emergency System. Afull load test will be conducted twiceannually.The Emergency System carries a twoyear/ 1000 hour warranty on thegenerator, one year on the transferswitch and is under an annual servicecontract for service and testing.Critical Power Lessons LearnedSeveral lessons were learned throughthe implementation and execution of theMail Shark Standby Generator Program.1) Management monitoring of corporate growth and demands on the Emergency Power Standby Systems is critical for maintaining business integrity.Page 3 of 4
  4. 4. Critical Power Lessons Learned (continued)2) A complete engineering analysis of the current and future electrical loads is required for correct System sizing and design.3) Attention paid to the implementation and commissioning schedule pays large benefits during the ‘tie-in’ to the facility.Critical Power Information ResourcesFor additional information on StandbyPower Systems, contact Russ Yerger,Critical Power Systems Manager,Reading Electric Phone: 610-929-5777;email: ryerger@readingelectric.comREADING ELECTRIC is a leadingsupplier of electro-mechanicalequipment & services for Industrial andCommercial Customers, specializing inproviding Total Solution Packages forCritical Power Requirements tosafeguard the Industry’s profitabilityfrom electrical power outages.Website: File: CP#033013Page 4 of 4