Ahmad Nadim bin Zainal
Building Construction Authority
How are you engineering what’s next?
Most of us commute by train everyday but we may not be aware that MRT Civil Defence (CD) shelters are actually integrated in some underground MRT stations! This means that the MRT CD Shelters are specially designed with facilities to ensure that the shelter environment is tolerable for the public if they are used for occupation in times of need. In times of war, the MRT CD shelters will be a place of refuge for the members of the public. We check that the MRT shelters are safe and future ready for the public to take cover in. Each MRT CD shelter has equipment to provide the shelter with electricity, ventilation and safe drinking water. It is extremely satisfying to see the completion and commissioning of a MRT CD shelter, as a result of the close collaboration of different agencies and industry stakeholders. Much effort goes into the construction and testing of the MRT CD shelters by different parties, to check that they are safe and structurally resilient.
What are some challenges you face in your project?What are some challenges you face in your project?
The full Mechanical & Electrical systems test is the last of the major commissioning tests that CD shelters are subjected to. Coordination of various parties, such as with the contractor, sub-contractor and equipment suppliers, during the test is a big challenge as it involves the operation of all the equipment at the same time to simulate the actual operation of the shelter. To overcome this, I had to guide the testing team through reviews of the testing method statements and briefings, prior to the test. On the other hand, I have a small fear of heights and one of the challenges that I face during site inspections is to inspect the site installations at height. For example, I have to climb scaffoldings to inspect the installation of anchor bolts used in the mounting of exhaust pipes of the generators. They usually span approximately 20-40m high along the vertical ventilation shaft. I would have to keep my cool and be alert while climbing the structure. It helps when I constantly remind myself that I am playing an important role in checking the installations to ensure that they are reliable and safe.
What is the best part about engineering? What is the best part about engineering?
As an engineer, you have the ability to create solutions in challenging situations. Not only that, it is dynamic and collaborative.
Why do you choose to be a Public Service Engineer?Why do you choose to be a Public Service Engineer?
I’ve always been intrigued by how things work. This, coupled with seeing my Dad being a handy man at home repairing or modifying electrical appliances, led me to take up engineering in Polytechnic and University. The exposure I gained then affirmed my choice to pursue a career as an engineer. Being an engineer in the Public Service provides me with the satisfaction of being part of nation building and also gives me the opportunity to contribute to society.