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In this issue:
Neither Wind nor Rain... Payroll and IT Defy the Storm
Storm Damage Likely to Accelerate Some Planned Office Moves
eShop Training
SLAC Safety Note: Portable Space Heaters

SLAC Today

Tuesday - February 2, 2010

Neither Wind nor Rain...

Payroll and IT Defy the Storm

From left: Jeanne Beredo, Susan Calandra, Sylvia Radin, Lori Zscherpel, Ellen Remerata and Yen Tran. (Photo by Julie Karceski.)

Despite the complete lab shutdown during SLAC's power outage, one comforting routine held: everyone got paid on time. With the failed power lines, flooding and debris, payroll probably did not register on many people's radars. But the effort involved in getting all of SLAC's employees their paychecks during a complete loss of computing resources deserves some kudos.

"It was a team effort between IT and payroll," said the Chief Financial Officer Susan Calandra. The payroll office, located in Building 41, has a backup plan to get everyone his or her paycheck in case of emergency.

Employees receive either a direct deposit or a check on the 7th and the 22nd of each month, in this case Friday January 22. The bank needed all of the deposit information electronically by Tuesday evening to meet this deadline. Luckily, because Monday January 18 was a holiday, the payroll office had manually entered the paper-based timesheets into the online payroll system the week before.

"We were on the ball—we had entered all the timesheets by Saturday," Calandra said.  Read more...

Storm Damage Likely to Accelerate Some Planned Office Moves

(Photo)
PEP City (a.k.a. LC or SLC City), including Building 214 (far left) and nearby trailers, sustained structural and electrical systems damage in the late January rainstorms. (Photo by Shawne Workman.)

Thanks to an intense two-weeks' effort from emergency, security and facilities staff, SLAC has recovered quickly from late January storm damage. After lightning caused a site-wide power outage, PG&E and SLAC crews had most of the lab operational again within two days. Facilities staff have cleared the worst of the mudslides and flooding. SLAC is perhaps fortunate that buildings sustaining the worst damage were mostly well-worn temporary structures, already slated for replacement. The residual damage, though, will accelerate office moves that were scheduled to begin in summer 2010 and beyond.

More than 80 staff members from damaged buildings are already working in temporary locations across the site. To set them up with longer-term space, a core team from the Operations and Accelerator Directorates is assessing which damaged areas can be made usable until the planned replacement space is open, and where existing space can accommodate more people.

"It's a fairly complicated shell game that we have to play, to move things around," said Deputy Chief Operating Officer Mark Reichanadter. "We don't want to repair some buildings now only to demolish them in June. That doesn't make sense. And we don't want to move staff back in only to move them back out again so soon."  Read more...

eShop Training

The SLAC Purchasing Department is now providing online training for eShop, SLAC’s Web-based procurement portal. Choose from the following topics for step-by-step tutorials:

  • Create a New eShop Easy Request
  • Approve an eShop Voucher through E-mail
  • Approve an eShop Voucher through Worklist

These courses require Internet Explorer 5.5 or later, and can be accessed on the eProcurement page by clicking the ePro On Line Training Tool link.

SLAC Safety Notes

Portable Space Heaters

Open grill space heaters are allowed only if, like this one, they have a fan to force the air through the grill. (Photo by Shawne Workman.)

SLAC allows the use of portable space heaters when personal comfort or other local heating needs can' t be met with building heater systems. Safety is a top consideration in selecting and using these heaters. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that more than 25,000 fires every year are associated with the use of portable space heaters, causing more than 300 deaths. An estimated 6,000 persons receive hospital emergency room care for burn injuries associated with contacting hot surfaces of portable heaters, mostly in non-fire situations.

When buying and using a portable, electric heater, follow these guidelines:

  • Purchase only heaters approved by a Nationally Rated Testing Laboratory, either Underwriter's Laboratory, ETL or CSA. The label must be attached to the unit. NRTL-listed heaters have necessary safety controls, such as instant tip-over shutdown and temperature limit switches.
  • Check that the heater has a three-pronged plug and is rated < 1,500 watts.
  • Purchase fluid-filled natural convection heaters when possible. These heaters resemble small radiators. They have relatively low exposed surface temperatures and no moving parts.
  • Open grill space heaters are allowed only if they have a fan to force the air through the grill. Check these heaters periodically for dust buildup on the grill and clean as necessary.
  • Plug the heater directly into a wall socket. Do not use an extension cord or power strip.
  • Locate the heater on a level surface away from foot traffic, well away from combustible materials or surfaces.
  • Unplug the heater by pulling the plug, not the cord.
  • Turn off the heater if you will be out of the room for more than a few minutes.
  • If you have a special temporary need to continuously operate a portable heater (for example, emergency maintenance of temperature-sensitive equipment), contact the fire marshal.

If your heater lacks a UL, ETL or CSA label, has a two-prong cord, or has a damaged cord or switch, replace it immediately. Contact your building manager to tag the heater and remove it from service.

Please direct any fire safety questions about portable heaters to the Fire Marshal's Office (x2095).

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