NASHVILLE, Tenn. (March 16, 2021) – Bradley Wilson, lock and dam equipment mechanic at Pickwick Lock on the Tennessee River in Counce, Tennessee, is the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Employee of the Month for January 2021.
Wilson is recognized primarily for taking the lead to rehabilitate Pickwick Lock’s main chamber lower tow-haulage unit.
“He constructed and installed a new controller unit, simplifying operation of the unit. In addition, he designed and constructed new mounting systems for all electrical components. He is currently in the process of modifying a pulley system for the installation of 1,000 feet of wire for the haulage unit,” said Lt. Col. Sonny B. Avichal, Nashville District commander.
The lower haulage unit is a piece of equipment that pulls a tow of barges out of the lock chamber when the tow must break up its tow when locking through the lock. The commander commended Wilson because he accomplished the repairs in between normal maintenance cycles, and the unit has been down more than two years.
“Bradley’s experience and dedication will bring a much-needed asset back to life at this project,” Avichal said.
At Pickwick Lock Wilson is the sole electrician responsible with performing maintenance and repair of lock buildings, grounds and structures related to the operation of the navigation lock. He also performs diagnostic maintenance inspections and conducts preventive maintenance of navigation lock equipment and operating systems.
“He answers the call when something goes wrong, day or night. In fact, he performed two recent emergency repair actions outside of his normal duty hours,” said Lockmaster Randall King.
Wilson, a native of Tuscumbia, Alabama, attended the 558 International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Apprenticeship Program starting in 2003, and then stayed in the electrical career field until the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District hired him in 2013.
“Since being hired, Brad has continually strived to learn as much as possible about locks and the machinery we use,” King stressed. “His work ethic goes without question, and he’s always willing to lend a hand with all work, not just electrical.”
Wilson said he is appreciative of the team at Pickwick Lock that helped him with the repair of the haulage unit. He credits Craig Smith, Ty Melton and David Mullin with their assistance.
In his off time, Wilson enjoys gardening and traveling with his wife and son.
“They have been really supportive of my career as an electrician and with the Army Corps of Engineers,” Wilson said.
King said the Pickwick Lock team is happy that the Nashville District selected one of their teammates as employee of the month.
“Brad is very deserving of the recognition,” King said. “He stands as a great example of a hard worker and a valued team member of the Pickwick and USACE family.”
(The public can obtain news, updates and information from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District on the district’s website at www.lrn.usace.army.mil, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/nashvillecorps and on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/nashvillecorps. The public can follow Pickwick Lock on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pickwicklock.)