As an Engineer / Building Operator Keith Fong is responsible for the maintenance of the facility including all the HVAC systems, lighting systems, and plumbing. He is also responsible for the ice installation, painting and the maintenance of the ice including cleaning.
DAY TO DAY
Keith’s typical day begins with an inspection of the condition of the ice sheet. The condition of the ice will dictate the rest of his day, if the ice needs flooding, edging, spudding that will be his priority. Then he must inspect all of the mechanical rooms which consist of the ice refrigeration equipment, air conditioning equipment and heating equipment within the building.
Keith must also maintain the preventative maintenance program which includes weekly, monthly, and quarterly maintenance on all equipment in the arena.
ON GAME DAYS
On game or event days Keith is faced with a much more time consuming task – preparing the ice for NHL play. He must ensure that all NHL and TV requirements are met by the ice. This means that it must be kept at the correct temperature both on the ice and in the building in order to guarantee the best ice quality.
Aside from ice preparation, Keith must also deal with fans and clients as well as help with the set up of concerts and special events.
HITTING THE BOOKS
Keith has his 4th Class Power Engineering and his 5th Class Refridgeration Endorsement. He recommends that the best way to pursue this career is to start with 5th Class Power Engineering or an Ice Facility Operator Ticket which will allow you to work at smaller arenas. It would also be a good idea to take Building Operator classes and 4th Class Power Engineering, which will allow you to work your way up to bigger facilities.
Keith suggests that this position is suited to those with good problem solving ability, a general interest in the sports and entertainment industry, and someone who is willing to commit to shift work.