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Move allows City of Pocatello to create Fleet Services Department

Inside the Fleet Services Department in Pocatello. 
Inside the Fleet Services Department in Pocatello. 

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - When the City of Pocatello moved its Street and Sanitation Department into the former Western States Cat building on Garret Way in March, the extra space allowed the city to create a Fleet Services Department. 

A plan that was in the works for several years finally came to fruition at the start of October. 

The new department has centralized the city's fleet repair and is currently handling the vehicles of the police department, parks and recreation department, water department, street department, sanitation department and all of City Hall.

Tom Kirkman, deputy public works director for the city, said that all the departments had their own maintenance division.

"It had its own mechanics and it maintained its own equipment. And so different departments had different maintenance intervals, different purchasing requirements, it was just kind of all over the board." 

Combining the forces, Kirkman says it hasn't been an issue for the mechanics since many of the vehicles are very similar. 

"The majority of all of our technicians that we've relocated here have a vast amount of knowledge on different vehicles, so it was pretty much a pretty easy transition." 

Since Oct. 1, when the program began, Kirkman said they've gathered a wealth of important data. 

"Everything that's being done is being tracked," he said. "So we can have the actual cost to operate a particular asset at a cost per mile, a cost per hour." 

Kirkman says that all the numbers are being evaluated to help plan for the future, including the creation of a preventative maintenance plan. 

"We'd rather prevent as many repairs as we can so that we don't have any catastrophic failures in the field that's going to slow down our crews," he explained. 

So far, Kirkman says the program has been a "home run," and is looking forward to some big plans in the near future. 

Article Topic Follows: Pocatello

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