Like Bugs to a Light…

As a commercial contractor we encounter many interesting situations – day and night. Several of our commercial accounts use our services for facility maintenance – handling a wide variety of projects, some of which require our services after hours. One would think that when the sun goes down and all is quiet within the Seattle city limits that a fair amount of work could be addressed without interruptions from the public. Oh how wrong – think again!

Over the years, our experience has taught us that after hours work is met with a mind blowing amount of people in our way – like bugs to a light. A good amount of our facility maintenance work for commercial accounts pertains to safety. A commercial client requested a new concrete anti-slip coating at their ATM locations. Of course, we scheduled this work to be performed after hours to avoid people, because the products being used needed 6 hours to cure before receiving foot traffic. The work was schedule to begin at about 8 pm and the area of work would be closed down until 8 am the following morning. A week in advance of our work, signs were posted that the ATMs would be closed for use on the specific night of our work.

Our crews worked the first few hours of the night shift to prep and apply the anti-slip coating, the remaining 6 hours was literally “watching paint dry”. At this point, the job foreman sent the crew home and he himself was left to wait out the remainder of the shift to ensure the coating was not disturbed and ready for use in the morning. No sooner did the crew pack up and leave, then all the ATM customers in the city needed to use this specific location. With the job foreman standing in front of the area of work to re-direct foot traffic and with the location completely “taped off” with several rows of caution tape, people were fighting their way in to use the ATM machines. Every excuse was given; “I’ll only be a minute”, “I need to get cash out”, “I won’t leave any foot prints”, etc. Why everyone and their brother needed to cross the line and step all over the newly applied anti-slip product that was curing, when there was another ATM machine around the other side of the bank, still has us scratching our heads. No matter how nicely our job foreman tried to redirect traffic, say the ATM machines were out of service, told patrons their shoes would get stuck in the wet concrete, every single bank customer crossed the line without regard for the project at hand. Keep in mind this work was performed on a Tuesday night and the crowds of people were coming in droves between midnight and 4 am. Who would have thought this one bank branch was so popular on a Tuesday night?

No matter what challenge a project brings, we stay the course and make it right for our clients. Our commercial accounts keep coming back to us for services because they know they can count on Wheeler Painting and Restoration Services to do the job right, whatever it takes. We do our best to plan for whatever we think may come at us on a project, but like bugs attracted to light, we had no idea how a wet concrete coating would attract so many patrons at 2 am.

Please reach out and let us know how we can help you maintain your facility, we pride ourselves on a quality job and working within the needs of your specific situation. Until the next funny story in the Adventures of Wheeler Painting and Restoration Services, be well and do good.