Utility Partners of America announces 200,000 incident-free hours

November 17, 2020

Milestone safety achievement highlights UPA’s work on SoCalGas project

Utility Partners of America (UPA), a leading provider of project management, construction management, operations, maintenance and professional services for utilities and energy cooperatives throughout the country, announced today a significant safety milestone on one of its long-standing projects.

After beginning operations of an eight-acre pipe and related materials yard for Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) in 2015, UPA has eclipsed 200,000 man-hours on the Bakersfield, California-based project with zero accidents, lost-time events or recordable injuries. A subsidiary of Sempra Energy, SoCalGas recently extended its contract with UPA through the end of 2022.

“SoCalGas has been an amazing partner to work with,” said Ed Schwalbach, UPA’s program lead on the project. “We have a great team in Bakersfield committed to quality and safety, along with an excellent working relationship, mutually aligned goals and effective communication between key stakeholders. Achieving this safety milestone is another example of our joint success and commitment to making safety and safe work practices our top priority. We want to work hard and earn our valued customer’s business every day.”

UPA’s work with SoCalGas in Bakersfield is in support of its Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan (PSEP) Program. This scope comes on the heels of a previous engagement in which UPA was responsible for project management and support. The success of that partnership, paired with UPA’s reputation for service and focus on safety and transparency, helped to form this new project relationship with SoCalGas when they were seeking a reliable partner.

Since taking on the Bakersfield project five years ago, UPA’s involvement has continued to grow.

What started as an eight-acre operation has evolved to 26 acres, including three warehouses that offer bulk and racked storage. UPA receives and sends more than 200 shipments of material from this facility each month. UPA is confident this project and scope of work will continue to expand.

In addition to overseeing storage and shipping, UPA facilitated the leasing of a facility and currently provides quality control, testing, inventory management and transportation services to SoCalGas.

The Bakersfield safety milestone of 200,000 man-hours with no lost-time events or recordable injuries represents nearly 100 man-years of work without incident, an impressive feat that serves as a testament to UPA’s and SoCalGas’ commitment to safety and excellence.

“UPA has been an outstanding collaborative partner throughout the years, and we are more than proud to see their continued commitment to safety and excellence,” said Jason Simonek, inventory management team lead at SoCalGas. “Here at SoCalGas, we greatly prioritize safety and safe working practices. We look forward to continuing working with UPA to achieve greater milestones in the future.”

For more information on UPA and how the company partners with utilities and energy co-ops to build, inspect, maintain and upgrade the nation’s utility infrastructure, visit UtilityPartners.com.