The Faces of Yuba Water Ben Deal, Asset Management Engineer

Yuba Water Agency's asset management engineer, Ben Deal, is responsible for analyzing the reliability and life expectancy of the agency's valuable hydropower production equipment. Get to know the man charged with ensuring this power generation equipment is in first-rate condition.

What do you do for Yuba Water Agency?

My job is to assess the reliability, life expectancy and economic impact of Yuba Water Agency hydroelectric power production equipment. This allows us to strategically schedule testing, preventative maintenance, repairs or replacement of equipment to protect the agency's revenue.

What does your average day look like? What are some of your essential duties?

Typically, I'm gathering and assessing information (test data, original design documents, drawings and coworkers knowledge) on our power generation equipment and evaluating that information to determine future needs and how it will impact the budget.

Do your duties differ throughout the year? And if so, how?

My duties are similar throughout the year but vary by project. However, during annual outages (routine maintenance), I'm able to inspect parts of the generating unit that are typically off limits while operating. This allows me to gain valuable information on the condition of the equipment as well as discuss observations by the maintenance crew and operators.

(Top left) Deal talks with Yuba Water Agency staff during the annual Yuba River Cleanup Day. (Bottom left) Deal leads a tour through New Bullards Bar Dam for local students. (Right) Deal discusses routine maintenance at Yuba Water Agency's New Colgate Powerhouse.

What do you enjoy most about working for Yuba Water Agency?

I really enjoy working with top notch people on projects that provide a positive impact on my local community. Having grown up in Marysville and experienced flood events, as well as evacuations, I understand the importance of protecting the community and providing an economic benefit.

Tell us something about yourself that most of us don't know.

Some people may know, but I've been on the City of Marysville Planning Commission for the past few years trying to contribute in making Marysville a great place to live and work.

Before working for Yuba Water Agency, what was the most interesting job you had?

I worked as a hydrogen fuel cell and electric vehicle test engineer for Nissan Technical Center and would analyze vehicle durability test data to determine vehicle condition and provide alternative measures on future components.

What are three words you would use to describe Yuba Water Agency?

Community, Integrity, Collaborative