It’s the beginning of a new week here in Suriname. SABI trainers Carl Keehn and Kurt Shriver worked with the EBS transmission crew over the weekend as they repaired a damaged conductor that was struck by a barge. Ralph Kenyon went out with a restoration crew during the night, and worked on several jobs that consisted of switching, cutout replacement, secondary wire down and a car hit pole. The principles and theories that were taught in the classroom were applied and reinforced in the field. The SABI trainers that worked with the crew over the weekend found the time invaluable.
But there was some uncertainty Monday as rumors of a strike vote began to circulate. The EBS workers were promised a $1000 SRM onet-ime payment at the end of October. When they didn’t receive the money in their paychecks, the EBS employees’ union was poised to follow through with a strike. Over 150 people attended the union meeting to discuss the possible strike, and at the end the Ministry agreed to pay the workers this Friday. Even with the possibility of a strike looming, the EBS employees where committed to continue on with the SABI training.
The transmission training started this week, both in the classroom and in the field. SABI also kicked off the foreman’s field training, and are continuing the level 1 field and classroom trainings as well. The linemen are getting their hands on gas-powered drills, chainsaws, and wood handle presses. The men are all eager to learn, and we have all built bonds with each other.
Report and photos compiled by Ralph Kenyon