The Commute

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Seabees get job done without big bucks, bureaucracy

May 8th, 2014 by ed friedrich

SeabeesFrom the sometimes it’s better to do it yourself file.
That was the case after a heavy rainstorm undermined Farragut Street on Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton. An estimate found it would cost $36,000 to bring in a contractor to fix it. Because of budget cuts, no funding was available. Several civilian employees would’ve been needed to award and monitor the contract, for this little section of street, and it would have taken several months.
The large pothole remained untouched for two weeks, hindering traffic at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility.
Plan B was called for. The Seabees answered.
A half dozen of them took care of planning and permitting. The Public Works Department provided them tools and materials.
They dug out the bad section of road and replaced with with a 15-by-30-foot  reinforced concrete slab. It took seven working days and cost the Navy just $4,900.
There could be a lesson there.

7 Responses to “Seabees get job done without big bucks, bureaucracy”

  1. Colleen Smidt Says:

    Great example Ed!

  2. RMParker Says:

    Being a former USN Seabee, I have participated in many of these type cost cutting solutions. Glad to see our local Seabees carrying on the tradition. “We Build, We Fight” Hoorah! Go Bees!

  3. Jane_Rebelowski Says:

    That is incredibly cheap, then I realized that is the cost of the materials only. Seeing as we have the trained staff, equipment, and fast track permitting it makes perfect sense. Good job.

  4. Dave Says:

    I’m also a former builder with the Seabees. The government could save millions of dollars using seabees on military bases in the US but the unions won’t let it happen. When I was in the rule was that seabees were aloud to do 10% of new construction on military bases in the US each calendar year.

  5. Steven Valenzuela Says:

    I’m glad to see the Seabees are getting recognized for the work they do. As a retired Seabee I have been part of many projects here on NBK and its sad to see that CBMU 303 will be closing up shop. Hoorah Seabee!!!

  6. Bill Brown Says:

    I am a retired airedale Officer but I had a detachment of Seabees working for me as an Airborne Minesweeping Department Head. They were fantastic, adaptable to other than there normal type of jobs, proactive and cheerful under unfamiliar and trying circumstances. Bravo Zulu

  7. Exit43 Says:

    Yes there is cost of training and oversite, not listed, but if the Davis-Bacon act was repealed, a lot more of these jobs would get done at a huge cost savings and give the Seabees better training. Not to mention the restrictions put on foods!