National Field Services Disaster Recovery Operations


In March 2014, disaster struck at the Southwestern manufacturing facility of an international consumer products packager. A transformer blew. Smoke and gas filled the electrical room. No one was seriously injured, but the failure of this single piece of equipment shut down one of the company’s major lines devoted to making aluminum cans. If the line wasn’t back up within a week, some thirsty people might start having problems picking up their favorite beverage.

So at 2 a.m. on a Saturday morning, the company called on us. By nine that morning, we had a team out at their site, some 150 miles from our Dallas, Texas facility, assessing the situation. Our team saw a section of the dry-type transformer’s winding had blown off and, after evaluating the MV cables, 480V breakers and switchgear, assessed that the damage was contained to the failure of insulation.

After relaying relevant information to headquarters, our technical team identified a viable replacement transformer in stock in our inventory. By Thursday night we had tested the new transformer, delivered it, modified it for the customer’s application, installed it, and tested it on-site. On Friday morning, the new transformer was energized and our grateful client returned to full production.

“The one-week turnaround was crucial,” said Electrical Engineer, Project Manager Tyler DeBey, who quarterbacked our response. “They couldn’t operate much past that with that line down.”

It was a team effort. “Several people had their hand in this project,” DeBey noted. “From out in the field to testing the equipment to shipping it and installing it, everyone did their part.”

He called special attention to our teams in the field. “The guys who responded to the initial emergency call and the guys that went out the following week to do the field installation were excellent. Everyone was really flexible and turned their schedules around to take care of this customer.”

A Range of Disaster Recovery Solutions

We have the resources, the responsiveness and the reliability you need in times of crisis. Our Disaster Recovery services include:

  • Emergency Response
  • Project Management
  • Equipment Rental & Quick Shipping
  • Substation Restoration
  • On-Site Bus Fabrication
  • Temporary Power Generation

Learn more about our Disaster Recovery services.

In case of an emergency, you can reach us 24x7 at 800-300-0157. Of course, it’s best to address your electrical power management issues before disasters happen. Contact us for information about our predictive and preventative maintenance solutions.

Return to Spring 2014 Field Notes

Project Timeline

2 a.m.
Transformer fails. Client calls NFS.

2-6 a.m.

We mobilize a team of Senior Technician & Electrical Engineer.

9 a.m.
Our team arrives and begins assessing situation. Sends details to HQ.

5 p.m.
We identify replacement transformer in inventory.

Responding technicians work with shop fabrication and project management teams to determine modifications needed to transformer. Transformer fully tested.

Two Field Engineers and a Switchgear Technician deploy to customer site to prepare switchgear for new transformer. Old transformer removed with assistance of a rigging team.

We ship new transformer to customer site. Transformer set in place and anchored by late evening

Our techs test transformer, install custom bussing on 480V side.

9 a.m.
Customer energizes the transformer, returns to full production.

Customers nationwide raise a can to our fast disaster recovery response.

Aging insulation fails. Circuits overheat. Electricity crackles. Smoke. Sparks. And then: Boom! Transformer explosions are dramatic, dangerous events that can cause serious injuries and death. And they can cripple a business’s ability to operate. When disaster strikes, the safety of your people is top priority, but you also must do all you can to address the issue and get online as soon as possible. National Field Services is here to help, as we did earlier this spring with a major consumer products packager.