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Order for changes No. 6, issued August 30, 1951, eliminated the installation of the butterfly valves and butterfly valve hatch covers from the contract; these were to be installed later by Government forces. This was necessary because of the late delivery of the butterfly valves and hatch covers furnished by the Government. No adjustment was made in the contract price.
29. Extra Work Orders. - Extra work order No. 1, issued July 25, 1950, provided for backfilling a mine tunnel with concrete. This tunnel was discovered in the foundation of Platoro Dam during foundation cleanup operations. The total expenditures for the work were $6,233.51.
Extra work order No. 2, issued July 30, 1951, provided for modification of the valve house in order to accommodate the butterfly valves fabricated with horizontally mounted valve control shafts instead of vertically mounted shafts as originally planned. The work was paid for on a cost plus 10 percent basis, the total cost being $1,915.69.
B. Minor Contracts
30. Specifications No. R5-14. - The construction of quonset huts and facilities for the Government camp at Platoro Dam was performed under specifications No. R5-14 by Ward E. Mathias, of Monte Vista, Colo., the low bidder, at a cost of $26,512.57. The contract was awarded on June 24, 1949, and notice to proceed was received by the contractor on July 21. The contractor experienced some delay in the delivery of the steel windows for the quonsets, but he completed all work on September 20, exactly on schedule.
Order for changes No. 1, issued August 24, 1949, provided for ceilings in the dormitories and one additional concrete foundation. Changes were made in the dormitories to provide greater privacy, and additional concrete foundation was included so that a garage and warehouse could be erected later by Government forces. Unit prices remained the same as the bid prices.
31. Specifications No. R5-15. - Construction of a liquefied petroleum gas system for Platoro Government camp was performed under specifications No. R5-15 by Superior Manufacturing Company, of Amarillo, Texas, the low bidder, at a cost of $4, 778. 24. The contract was awarded June 25, 1949, and notice to proceed was received by the contractor on July 7. The contractor delivered the tanks and began installation on July 18. There were no, delays and he completed all work on August 20, 1949, one day ahead of the completion date.
32. Specifications No. R5-13. - Platoro reservoir site was cleared under specifications No. R5-13 by Welch Industries, Inc., of Colorado Springs, Colo., the low bidder, at a cost of $33, 769.00. The contract was awarded August 11, 1949, and notice to proceed was received by the contractor on September 10, 1949. There were no appreciable delays except for winter shutdowns and a 20-day period between July 3 and July 23, 1951, when burning of cleared material was prohibited by the Forest Service because of extreme fire danger. The contractor completed work August 13, 1951, 18 days ahead of schedule..
33. Specifications No. R5-24. - Construction of a 2-bedroom gatetender's residence and garage at Platoro was performed under specifications No. R5-24 by Herbert F. Winner, Notice to proceed was received by the contractor on August 30, 1950, and the work was accepted by the Government on October 31.
34. Equipment Specifications. - There were two equipment specifications for Platoro Dam appurtenant works. The outlet pipe was furnished by the Lang Company of Salt Lake City, Utah, under specifications No. 2665 at a cost of $10, 334, and the high-pressure gate for the outlet works was furnished by Albina Engine and Machine Works, of Portland, Oreg.; under specifications No. 2572 at a cost of $14, 224.
May 18, 195wever, the stated that the
35. Claims by Contractor Against the Government. - Welch Industries, Inc., contractor for clearing Platoro reservoir under specifications No. R5-13, filed a claim with the Comptroller General on May 18, 1951, contending that he cleared 60 or 70 acres in excess of the contract requirement. However, the claim was disallowed on the basis that the contract was clear and unambiguous wherein it stated that the areas were approximate only and the contractor "shall not be entitled to additional compensation because of any variation therefrom."
D. Government Organization
36. General. - All engineering, inspection, and administration were accomplished by an organization under the construction engineer. The organization was divided into a field engineering force, an office engineering force, and an administrative force. The field force was subdivided into survey, inspection, and laboratory groups.
37. Administrative and Office Engineering Forces. - The administrative force consisted of an administrative assistant, clerk-typist, camp maintenance foreman, mechanic, plumber, carpenter, electrican, truck driver, and four laborers. This force was responsible for performance of administrative activities and functions of the office, performing routine office duties such as filing, costkeeping, personnel and finance operations, and material procurement. Operation and maintenance work in the Government camp and maintenance of Government vehicles was also performed by the administrative force.
The office engineering force consisted of an office engineer, assistant office engineer, one engineer, two computers, and one clerk-typist. Other men were borrowed from the field forces whenever their duties decreased. This group was responsible for (1) computation of quantities for monthly and final contract earnings; (2) drafting correspondence and reports to initiate and execute construction contracts; (3) preparing, editing, and assembling all construction reports; (4) designing, procuring material, and supervising construction of Platoro Government camp; (5) preparing preliminary drafts of specifications for additional facilities; (6) preparing basic cost estimates and work orders and assisting in other programs work for Platoro Dam; and (7) preparing, assembling, and filing permanent construction records.
38. Field Force. - All field personnel were under the direction of the field engineer, who supervised activities of the survey, inspection, and laboratory units.
(a) Survey Unit. --The survey unit was headed by a chief of surveys, who had four to twelve assistants. Personnel was augmented, as required, to expedite surveys for preparation of monthly pay estimates by men from the laboratory and camp forces. Some additional help was provided during the summer months by temporary employment of engineering aids (trainees). The survey unit was divided into parties of four or five members, each headed by a chief of party.
The survey unit was primarily responsible for all surveys necessary during the construction of Platoro Dam. Horizontal and vertical control was provided through a system of triangulation stations and permanent benchmarks. In addition to establishing line and grade for the outlet tunnel, it was necessary to check forms for all concrete placements and for the installation of metalwork and machinery. Items checked in the outlet works include the outlet pipe, high-pressure gate, trashrack structure, and valve house.
The survey work on the dam consisted of taking original and final cross sections, taking progress sections for monthly payments, and setting slope stakes for all zones of fill placement. The latter was quite difficult because of the two curves in the dam which made it necessary to stake these two portions each time slope stakes were set.
Original and final cross sections of all borrow areas were taken, along with progress sections for montly payments. This work was made exceedingly difficult and laborious by the steep slopes and irregular terrain encountered in the zone 1 and zone 3 borrow
Permanent benchmarks were set along the dam axis, on the spillway bridge, on the trashrack structure, and on the valve house floor after all construction activities had ceased.
(b) Inspection Unit. --The inspection unit was under the supervision of a chief inspector and consisted of three civil engineers, five construction inspectors, and one engineering aid. During peak construction periods, additional personnel were furnished by the laboratory and survey units. Construction work was carried out generally in stages. The tunnel outlet works were constructed during the 1949 construction season, and embankment operations were performed during 1950 and 1951 in conjunction with the completion of drilling and grouting and intermittent concrete operations in the valve house, grout cap, and spillway bridge. For this reason, inspection could be shifted to the different phases of the work as they were performed.
Six inspectors were assigned for inspection of all outlet tunnel excavation, reinforcement steel, embedded metal, and concrete lining operations; sandblasting, painting, and installation of the 48-inch wye and the 56-inch discharge pipe; earth and rock excavation for the valve house; and diamond drilling and grouting of pattern holes and voids in the outlet tunnel.
After embankment operations were commenced, one inspector was placed in charge of inspection for the completion of concrete activities in the valve house, grout cap, and spillway bridge, and installation of miscellaneous metalwork. After completion of the outlet tunnel, one inspector, at times assisted by a second inspector, was placed in charge of inspection for diamond drilling and grouting of the dam foundation. This inspector, in addition to performing these duties, also checked excavation activities for the grout cap, spillway crest wall, and spillway bridge.
On embankment operations, a crew of three inspectors and one laboratory technician was assigned to each of the two 10-hour shifts, with one inspector in charge. Inspection consisted of checking borrow pits for depth of cut and material types, final cleanup of abutments in the dam foundation, and placing of embankment materials. The laboratory technician checked the moisture inspection duties as assigned.
Daily inspection tours were made in the reservoir clearing area by regularly assigned personnel.
(c) Laboratory Unit. --The laboratory unit consisted of two civil engineers, one engineering aid, and one laborer, and was headed by a materials engineer. As work requirements were increased during the peak period of embankment operations and by concrete operations paralleling earth embankment operations, additional control inspectors were obtained from the office engineering, survey, or inspection sections.
The laboratory unit was responsible for all control testing during embankment operations. This consisted primarily of taking field density tests as required in zones 1 and 2 for compaction and moisture control and percolation-settlement tests on record control samples. Further laboratory tests, mechanical analysis and specific gravity, were performed to provide necessary data for preparation of monthly embankment reports.
Two field control inspectors were assigned to each of two 10-hour shifts worked by the contractor to perform the above mentioned testing.
39. Government Wage-Hour Forces. - Force-account work consisted chiefly of (1) providing water, sewer, and electrical systems for Platoro Government camp; (2) erecting a garage and warehouse building, laundry building, generator building, and other minor buildings; (3) installing 24 house trailer units; (4) erecting four Dallas huts; and (5) operation and maintenance of the Government camp and vehicles.
Except for the mechanic, all wage board employees were under the supervision of the camp superintendent. At maximum strength, this organization consisted of two plumbers, three carpenters, one electrician, one bulldozer operator, two truck drivers, and 18 laborers. Wage rates ranged from $1.20 per hour for laborers to $2. 24 per hour for electricians and plumbers.
Because of a lack of housing and the isolated location, it was difficult at first to recruit sufficient personnel in the skilled trades to carry on the camp construction program. However, this situation greatly improved and at the end of the 1949 working season the organization was adequately staffed. The common labor supply was always adequate.
E. Contractor's Organization
40. Prime Contractor. - Operations of the Hinman Construction Company, prime contractor (specifications No. 2594), were directed by a general superintendent, an engineer, and an office manager. The following subcontractors were employed to perform the work indicated:
41. Minor Contractors. - Welch Industries, Incorporated, (specifications No. R5-13) performed their reservoir clearing work under the direction of a superintendent. They employed the following subcontractors:
Trimming and cutting saw logs.
Sawing dimensioned lumber.
42. Employment. - Data regarding the number of employees engaged by the contractors are as follows:
The wage scale paid by both contractors ranged from $1.30 an hour for heavy construction laborers to $2.50 for enamelers.
43. Safety. - During the early construction period proper emphasis was not placed upon safety. As a result of efforts on the part of Reclamation personnel, however, the condition was gradually rectified as the contractor's operations became stabilized.
After some delay an adequate ventilation system was supplied for the outlet tunnel and proper precautions were adopted for handling powder and caps after delivery to the point of use from the powder house.
Haul roads were kept in good operating condition. Cuts in slide and solid rock areas, plus normal loss of material from loaded trucks, required the services of from one to three men in addition to a motor grader to keep them cleared.
The Bureau did not have a full time inspector during the entire period of construction because procurement of personnel for work at the project was consistently difficult. The contractor designated a man as safety engineer, who cooperated fully with Government personnel.
Lost-time injuries and frequency and severity rates of the prime contractor's personnel are as follows:
Safety practices were generally good in the reservoir clearing work performed under specifications No. R5-13. Lost-time injuries and frequency and severity rates were as follows: