Worker to be released from hospital


Last updated 1/22/2014 at 9:54am

A worker burned in an accident at Grand Coulee Dam last November is due to be released from hospital today, the Bureau of Reclamation has informed an irrigation district.

The Columbia Basin Development League reported to members in its email newsletter last week that the bureau said Dan McCulloch would be released Jan. 22.

McCulloch, 54, was flown to Harborview Medical Center with extensive burns Nov. 18 after a mishap with switch gear for Pump Generator 12 in the John W. Keys III Pump-Generating Plant.

Of the 12 units in the plant, six are pumps and six are pump-generators. Reclamation normally uses five pumps to keep water flowing to the 670,000-acre Columbia Basin Project, the economic impact of which is estimated at $3.7 billion in Adams, Franklin and Grant counties alone, where irrigators are apprehensive that repairs will be made in time for the 2014 irrigation season.

Coulee Medical Center ER and Walk-In Care

The bureau says they will meet their March startup with the help of nine additional workers hired to clean up the hazardous smoke residue inside the plant.

“Cleaning is ongoing,” the newsletter says. “Pumps will be brought into operation in a slightly different order than originally planned. At this time the first pumps planned to be operational will be P-3 and P-4. Progression will then be P-5, P-6, P-1 and P-2. This change was because of a spare exciter in place on generator G-1(which powers P-1 and P-2). As a result, startup procedures are more difficult. Once P-1 and P-2 are started, they will be run continuously. Progress on the main pumping bay units includes: Pump 1 is 95%, pump 2 is 90% clean, pump 3 is 95% clean and 4 is 90% clean, pump 5 is 75% clean and pump 6 is 50% clean. Work continues on restoring communications in the areas of PG-11, PG-12 and firefighters’ offices and quarters.”

The bureau has not released an estimate of repair costs.


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