Success and innovation - problem solving sailor praised on Operation MANITOU
20 February 2015
A Marine Technician on board HMAS Success has been praised for initiating a series of innovative projects to improve his ship’s capability and the safety of those on board.
LSMT Nimrod Arevalo is currently on Operation Manitou – the Australian Government's contribution to the international effort to promote maritime security, stability and prosperity in the Middle East Region.
LS Arevalo has undertaken about eight separate projects involving modifications since joining the ship, which has resulted in significant cost savings and efficiencies.
The modifications have been carried out across several departments but he says a modification to a RAS Winch was a personal standout.
“We came up with a special Safety Anti-Reversing Ratchet for the hand winch,” he said.
“I had to re-engineer the original and in the end we came up with a safer and more effective design.”
LS Arevalo ran each innovation past his supervisor CMDR Arran Melville who was eager to approve his ideas.
CMDR Melville said he was impressed by his MT’s innovation and drive.
Our business should be about continuous improvement,” CMDR Melville said.
“Just because we have always followed a certain process doesn't mean it’s the best way of doing things.”
“Whenever you have an idea to present, make sure it is attainable, that all the resources are available and that you have the right skills to do the job,” he said.
“By doing this you will earn the trust of both your supervisor and respect from fellow colleagues.”
CMDR Melville agrees any sailor who presents a solution to a problem should be commended, dissmissing suggestions that innovative solutions can carry too much risk.
“Each idea must be considered on merit,” CMDR Melville said.
“Don't get bogged down in process, remain output focussed and look at ways to complete the mission.
“As long as any innovative repair undergoes the requisite amount of engineering rigour and all hazards are identified and assessed and subsequently managed then any residual risk can be adequately managed.”
For his part, LS Arevalo remains on the lookout for more technical innovations and challenges.
“Every time I perform a job or make any project I ask myself, why do it? How can I do it?
“And then I put my heart into it.”