Throughout any given year at Casey, many intense labour hours are completed, in the background, by a small team to assist with the Australian Antarctic Division’s science and research programs.
This small team is entrusted with maintaining an array of mobile plants such as: Hägglunds over snow vehicles, quad bikes, earth-moving machinery, outboard engines and Zodiac watercraft to name a few.
It is also tasked with maintaining fixed plant such as the main and emergency power houses, small generators and pumps and the transferring of fuels around station.
These jobs ensure that the many visitors to the station can maintain, as close to normal, living conditions similar to those they have become accustomed to back in Australia and ensure the works program for the year can be achieved in a safe and timely manner.
It is certainly not coincidental that to enable this to happen all tasks are carefully planned and numerous contingency plans put in place in the event of an equipment breakdown or failure. It is also no secret that Casey station is the busiest of all four stations throughout the summer period and has the greatest amount of mobile and fixed plant equipment to maintain.
In order for all this to be successful many factors have been considered. None is more important or arguably more painful than the job of stock-taking.
Stock-taking or inventory checking for Team Dieso is the physical verification of the quantities and condition of all items held on station that enable the above mentioned tasks to be carried out.
The team has now commenced what will certainly be a long and arduous task of finding, counting, sighting and recounting the thousands of spare part items we have here on the shelves, in the MPH (Main Power House), in the EPH (Emergency Power House)and in the Greenstore.
Given that the nearest mechanical store, workshop or manufacturer is some 3000+ kilometers away the need to be accurate, precise and order enough spare parts for the coming season is extremely important. Accordingly our emphasis is on getting it right the first time.
Jason Blackwell, Mechanical Services Supervisor and Plant Inspector