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Miami's "Maintenance 7" more like Miami's Prevention 80

When pipes burst or electricity fails, the Maintenance 7 is Miami University's first-responder team — a team of about five, but backed by all 80 members of Miami's building maintenance department. Their weapon against disaster: Prevention.

“The name Maintenance 7 came from a slang term that started about 15 years ago when we used radios for communication,” said Jeremy Davis, director of the building maintenance department within Miami’s physical facilities department (PFD). “The radio channel frequency for emergencies was maintenance 7, and the term stuck.”

As first-responders, their job is to assess the situation, stop the immediate problem and then call in experts from the department. On call 24/7 year round, Maintenance 7 team members address issues from electrical and plumbing failures to HVAC-R repair. 

Winter presents freezing temperatures and dangerous weather and summer brings high heat and severe storms — all of which can create havoc. In mid-June, heavy rains caused flooding in and outside of buildings throughout campus. On that day, Miami’s PFD responded to 25 calls on campus.

“We were starting to catch our breath when the fire hydrant blew off near McGuffey Hall causing major damage to the hillside and parking lot,” he said.

Davis explains that on days like the one in June, the Maintenance 7 turns into 80 or more as they also work with Miami’s grounds department and the city of Oxford to stabilize the situation and then fix the problems.

“Last October, one week before Homecoming, a water main burst at Yager Stadium causing outages to the scoreboard and a host of technical issues. Crews worked night and day to restore and repair so that on game day, it looked like nothing had happened,” Davis explained.

“It’s easy to point to floods, roof failures and electrical outages and pat ourselves on the back for restoring services, saying we saved the day, but in reality, what saves the campus from catastrophes is prevention,” Davis added.

Armed with highly trained technicians, the maintenance department systematically inspects and strategizes to prevent any kind of system failure.

“It’s like changing the oil in your car to prevent issues down the road,” Davis said. “We are proactive so that our buildings run efficiently and our customers receive consistent service.”

Adopting the university’s Leveraging Efficiencies and Aligning Needs (LEAN) business model, the maintenance department also streamlined its way of operation. Methods now more efficiently cover the university’s increasing needs to compensate for the increased square footage resulting from new buildings, increased complexity of systems, as well as the outside infrastructure—all totaling about 8 million square feet of building space. Last year, the department handled more than 28,000 work orders.

“Moving forward, our model is evolving into a more planned and scheduled systematic approach where our teams are will be equipped each day with the tools and parts kits prior to being dispatched. They may have seven different jobs that day, but they will have all the necessary tools and supplies they need to go from one job to the other and not waste time and resources traveling back and forth to the shop,” Davis said.

They also collaborated with other departments planning for renovations of existing buildings and new ones coming online.


“When building and renovating, it’s critical to not just think about cost of construction, but total cost of ownership. It’s easier to make decisions on ink rather than after construction,” Davis said.

Written by Carole Johnson, university news and communications, carole.johnson@MiamiOh.edu

University Communications and Marketing

University News and Communications
17 MacMillan Hall
Miami University
Oxford, OH 45056
513-529-7592
513-529-3257 (fax)

Areas of expertise

Miami University's department of maintence specializes in the following trades:

Plumbing, HVAC-R, building automation, sheet metal, tile repair, paint and plaster repair, preventative maintenance, sign, pest control, appliance repair, electronics, elevator, fire alarm, lighting, masonry, roofing, locksmiths (security) and carpentry.

Locations
Luxembourg
West Chester
Middletown
Hamilton
Oxford
  • Luxembourg
    Luxembourg

    John E. Dolibois European Center, Luxembourg

    One of Miami's oldest continuous study abroad programs, the Miami University John E. Dolibois Center (MUDEC) in Luxembourg offers students the opportunity to enroll in Miami classes taught by European-based and Ohio-based Miami faculty. Students enjoy a unique combination of first-class academics, engagement in the local community, and various faculty-guided and independent travel opportunities.

    Contact and emergency information for the Luxembourg Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    Château de Differdange
    1, Impasse du Château
    L-4524 Differdange
    Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
    luxembourg@MiamiOH.edu
    MiamiOH.edu/luxembourg

    217-222 MacMillan Hall
    531 E. Spring Street
    Oxford, Ohio 45056, USA

    Directions

    Main Operator: 011-352-582222-1
    Oxford-based Coordinator: 513-529-5050
    Emergency info: MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • West Chester
    West Chester

    Voice of America Learning Center

    Located midway between Cincinnati and Dayton along I-75, the Voice of America Learning Center (VOALC) offers undergraduate and graduate courses and programs drawn from Miami's Regional and Oxford campuses. Home to Miami's MBA program, the Learning Center provides ready access to graduate programs for area educators and courses leading to the BIS degree for undergraduates.

    Contact and emergency information for the Voice of America Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    7847 VOA Park Dr.
    (Corner of VOA Park Dr. and Cox Rd.)
    West Chester, OH 45069
     
    voalc@MiamiOH.edu
    MiamiOH.edu/voalc

    Printable Floor Plan
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-895-8862
    (From Middletown) 513-217-8862
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Middletown
    Middletown

    Middletown Regional Campus

    Nestled on 141 acres near I-75, Miami University Middletown offers bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, and beginning coursework for most four-year degrees. Nearby Greentree Health Science Academy immerses Miami's nursing and health information technology students in the health care experience while taking classes.

    Contact and emergency information for the Middletown Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

     4200 N. University Blvd.
    Middletown, OH 45042
    regionalwebmaster@MiamiOH.edu
    regionals.MiamiOH.edu

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-727-3200
    (Toll-free) 1-86-MIAMI-MID
    Office of Admission: 513-727-3216
    Campus Status Line: 513-727-3477
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Hamilton
    Hamilton

    Hamilton Regional Campus

    A compact, friendly, commuter campus, Miami Hamilton offers bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, and beginning coursework for most four-year degrees. Small class sizes, on-site child care, and flexible scheduling make Miami Hamilton attractive to students at all stages of life and career.

    Contact and emergency information for the Hamilton Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    1601 University Blvd.
    Hamilton, OH 45011
    regionalwebmaster@MiamiOH.edu
    regionals.MiamiOH.edu

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-785-3000
    Office of Admission: 513-785-3111
    Campus Status Line: 513-785-3077
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Oxford
    Oxford

    Miami University, Oxford Ohio

    Nationally recognized as one of the most outstanding undergraduate institutions, Miami University is a public university located in Oxford, Ohio. With a student body of 16,000, Miami effectively combines a wide range of strong academic programs with faculty who love to teach and the personal attention ordinarily found only at much smaller institutions.

    Contact and emergency information for the Oxford Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    501 E. High St.
    Oxford, OH 45056

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-529-1809
    Office of Admission: 513-529-2531
    Vine Hotline: 513-529-6400
    Emergency info: MiamiOH.edu/emergency