Here’s something you don’t get to see every day: the world’s largest still-active steam locomotive, the Union Pacific Big Boy 4014. Though there are many non-operational locomotives you can observe, being able to see and hear the movement, steam and whistle in action are a unique and exciting experience for a boiler inspector.
Our Western Regional Supervisor, Brian Mallynn, recently took his kids to visit this amazing piece of equipment, and explains why it’s so important to men in his line of work.
“My kids (Evan, 11 and Emma, 9) have had the opportunity to see many stationary, non-operational locomotives, but seeing this locomotive in action – moving, making noises, leaking steam out of different parts, and feeling the tone of the whistle in their chest – was a whole new experience. The conductor told me that the superheated whistle is much louder than the saturated steam whistle we heard. He also said that the bottom blow, at pressure, shoots between 75 and 100 feet from the boiler.
“As a boiler inspector, I can’t take my kids to work – it’s just too dangerous. Even if I could, all they would really see is a machine and a room full of equipment, not the way it all works. They would see the flame of the burner, but not what its steam does. A locomotive, however, is like a manufacturing facility on the go, and one that my kids can understand. It shows how steam is made and how it’s used. They can hear the whine of the steam turbine generator and the whistle, see the fire, the steam, and the power of the movement of the train.
“Getting to see this train in action is a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence! I hope that someday my kids will show their kids the pictures and videos of this day, realize why we went, and want their kids to experience it too.”
Ever wondered what a boiler inspector gets to see on the job? An average day for our team is anything but average.
On the docket for inspection today? A rental water tube boiler. Come take a look!
This water tube boiler requires feed water, natural gas and electricity to be piped to it. It is mounted on a Lowboy trailer, which allows the boiler to be lowered to the ground to assist the operators and mechanics. The grey box (towards the center of the photo) is where 480 volt 3 phase power is applied to the boiler, and the large square-shaped box stores and protects all of the electrical controls for the boiler and burner controls.
From another angle, you can see the gauges across the top of the board that show gas, feed water, steam, pressure and temperature. The silver cylinder in this picture is the air cleaner for the blower for the burner, the yellow pipe is the gas fuel train for the boiler and the black pipe is the gas piping made on-site. The left hand side of the boiler has the electronic controls with the switches and indicator lights. This boiler receives 20 psi natural gas and lowers it down to 15 psi for the burner to operate properly.
From the top of the boiler, you can see the relief valves, which are shipped separately from the boiler. They can be disassembled to be sent for testing and cleaning and will have certification paperwork and seals that prove their maintenance. You can see this boiler has the ability to add a third relief valve.
See the thick vertical silver cylinder with the sight glass attached to it? It’s the primary water level controller. The sight glass shows the operator the boiler’s water level through visual indication and uses a series of different lengths of metal rods (through conductivity to the water) to tell the computer what the water level of the boiler is. These rods control specific functions of the boiler controls, such as opening the boiler feed water valves, allowing the burner to operate and sounding alarms if the water is too high or too low. All the other piping on this side of the boiler is for a low volume, low pressure steam reducing station. This would be used for steam tracing to prevent freezing in the winter.
If you find this interesting, take a look at our careers page. We are always looking for great people to add to our team!
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Meet John Kopetz! John joined the Florida BPC team in March 2021 as a jurisdictional inspector, with commissions in Florida, Georgia and Alabama. He brings over 40 years of field experience as a boiler and machinery inspector and claim specialist. John recently retired from Travelers Insurance Company as a senior risk control consultant, and he previously operated high pressure boilers for the US Navy and for a hospital.
Outside of work, John loves spending time with his two grandchildren, and enjoys hunting, target shooting and boating.
Welcome to the team, John!
Help us welcome Joe to the team as our new Marketing and Sales Manager!
Joe joins us with a background in market-facing primary and reinsurance underwriting, including equipment breakdown and technical property risks. His market knowledge includes both direct and wholesale brokers, reinsurance brokers and MGU/MGA management programs.
He resides in a Philadelphia suburb with his Lab/Great Dane ‘twins,’ Brody and MacKenzie. His ‘non-twins’ are son Connor, a construction company operations manager, and daughter Riley, a nurse practitioner. Joe’s interests include the care and fielding of an old house and nearly anything outdoors.
We’re so glad to have you with us, Joe!
Meet Ashley Moore! She’s our newest addition to BPC, joining our finance team. We’re so glad to have you on board, Ashley!
BPC: Tell us about your new role and how you heard about BPC. I am the accounting manager and just started this month. I am excited to be a part of the team at BPC! I have known BPC and the Cox family (BPC’s owners) for about 10 years. I used to work for the public accounting firm that serves BPC.
BPC: Tell us about your day-to-day role. I’m still training right now, but spend most of my day on the computer. I will be communicating with the field staff, customers and vendors.
BPC: What do you enjoy most about working here? I like the people! They have been very welcoming and seem to enjoy their jobs, which makes it a great working environment. I also like that I will be able to interact with the customers, clients and other employees, as I am an accountant who also likes people!
BPC: What did you do career-wise prior to coming on to BPC? Before joining the BPC team, I was in public accounting for over 10 years and also worked for a company that provides trust and financial administration.
BPC: Tell us about your life outside of work. My husband Charlie and I have two daughters, Sage and Eliza, who are six and four. They keep us very busy. As a family, we like to be outside, hike, go to the beach and spend time with our extended families and friends.Read More
Meet Thomas Danielson!
Beginning his boiler and pressure vessel career in the United States Navy, Thomas served as a boiler technician, operating, maintaining, and repairing M and D type propulsion plant boilers, auxiliary equipment, and the administration of oil lab activities.
Upon leaving the Navy, Thomas worked for Nashville Thermal Transfer Corp. as an assistant boiler operator and maintenance mechanic. He then served the state of Tennessee as a Deputy Boiler Inspector – where he achieved a National Board Commission – and later the state of Nevada as a Safety Specialist III, inspecting boilers, pressure vessels, elevators, and escalators.
We’re grateful that in September of 2020, he came to work with BPC as a Senior Jurisdictional Inspector in the Nevada region, where he lives with his wife and spends time with his three grown children and seven grandkids. Thank you for all you do, Thomas!
Meet Brent Pickle!
Brent joins our Oklahoma region as a Jurisdictional Inspector. He comes to BPC with experience as a CNA risk control representative and he previously worked for the Oklahoma Department of Labor as a boiler inspector and review team leader.
Brent served in both active duty and the reserves in the United States Air Force.
Some of his favorite hobbies include fishing and hunting, but you can almost always find him enjoying the outdoors and spending time with his wife.
BPC is grateful for the contribution Brent makes to our team – thanks Brent!
Meet Dan Powell!
Dan is from the small town of Waterloo, located in southern Illinois. He began a welding career in St. Louis, and from there began to travel as a welder. By going through the boilermakers apprenticeship, Dan became a journeyman boilermaker and then spent five years working boilermaker jobs all over southern Illinois.
He’s been training to become a boiler inspector in the central region. Dan is looking forward to the challenge of passing the National Board exam and becoming a commissioned inspector for BPC in Illinois.
Along with reading and traveling, Dan is a passionate hunter and outdoorsman, enjoying hunting, hiking, and maintaining the property he and his wife own.
We’re glad to have you on the team, Dan!Read More
Boiler & Property Consulting has been ranked a consistent industry leader by Jurisdiction Online for the last three years. BPC is a Buford, GA jurisdictional boiler inspection firm that operates in conjunction with XL Insurance America (XLIA) and has consistently ranked #1 by Jurisdiction Online for maintaining the lowest percentage of overdue objects.
Jurisdiction Online’s monthly report ranks users on their percentage of overdue objects. BPC has continued to maintain an industry-leading, lowest percentage of overdues over the course of three years.
“This achievement is simply the manifestation of the hard work and professionalism of our team,” said Venus Newton, president of Boiler & Property Consulting. “At BPC, we take customer service seriously. By working closely with our customers, we ensure that they receive quality inspections on time in order to keep their equipment operating safely and in compliance with state regulations. It is nice to be recognized for doing the right thing, and I’m very proud of our team for hitting this three year milestone.”
BPC is one of the top boiler inspection companies in the United States. The company has inspectors nationwide and services all industries including power generation, basic metals, chemical, steel and pulp and paper.
The company has used Jurisdiction Online for the past five years. Jurisdiction Online supports regulatory code enforcement workflows, risk management workflows and jurisdictional accounting needs associated with regulatory activities. Its products are used by agencies in 31 states, more than 90 local jurisdictions and multiple Fortune 500 and private sector companies, including major insurers involved in the boiler and pressure vessel market.Read More
2020 has been a year full of challenges and triumphs for BPC. Like most businesses, we’ve had to pivot the way we operate, but one thing hasn’t changed: our commitment to excellence with our customers and with each other. Our hardworking team has kept BPC a consistent leader on Jurisdiction Online’s list of the lowest percentage of overdue objects during this busy year.
To our current clients: know that we feel such gratitude for our amazing clients like you. You keep us motivated to give our best and we are truly proud to have the opportunity to serve you. May the rest of this year bring you many happy moments, successes and memories.
For those we don’t yet serve: please know we would love the opportunity to help you with your inspections, property loss control solutions and risk assessments.
From all of us here at BPC, we wish you and yours a Happy Holiday and New Year.
– Venus Newton, President of Boiler & Property ConsultingRead More