Tag Archives: Energy Safety

Delta #EpicPowerFail 3 : Rotten Poles and Greedy Algorithms

design-open-badges-university-college-london-slidesharecdn-com-1aGrady’s old poster (office)

Received from Christchurch Driver [CD]
Wed, 26 Oct 2016 at 11:10 p.m.

Readers, do you know what an algorithm is ? OK, make a brew and consider this while letting the Bells blend with the white stuff : WiseGeek advises that an algorithm is “a set of detailed instructions which results in a predictable end-state” (that’s geek for : “result”), however it also cautions that algorithms are only as good as the instructions given.

WiseGeek goes on to say that examples of the algorithmic, are instructions for assembling a model airplane, or, for the manually challenged among you, a computer programme ie simply, instructions in a set order, designed to perform a specific task….

Now, diving deeper, WiseGeek advises there are a number of different types of algorithm, with such esoteric names, as, “brute force algorithms”, “randomised algorithms”, and even backtracking algorithms (buy one of those quickly Grady !!), and my personal favourite, the “divide and conquer algorithm” (Yes Grady, Mr Crombie has bought one of those and was practising with it in today’s ODT….). Speaking of the ODT, if Vaughan Elder keeps up his sterling work, awards are beckoning for him, and deservedly so.

But the algorithm that Delta prefers and uses is the Greedy Algorithm, which is defined as an algorithm that “attempts to find not only a solution, but to find the ideal solution to any given problem”.

Now readers, stop stamping your feet, spilling the Bells and making the super wines all soggy (no madeira cake for you, ratepayers !). I understand that you don’t want to know about arcane formulas to balance electrical loads and the like, and how could algorithms possibly have anything to do with replacing rotten power poles ?

Within the “asset strategy” department of Delta – yes there is such a thing, and yes, they are six-figure inhabitants of the Delta payroll, there are some computer scientists, who have constructed a greedy algorithm to Grady’s specifications. Within the lines industry, this algorithm is the 8th wonder of the world. It can take a linesman’s power pole condition report, complete with photographs and evidence of rotten bases, and re-classify it from Condition 0 (immediate replacement) to Condition 4, 5, 6. This is a wonderful thing, because it enables Grady and his enablers to say that poles have been “rigorously tested by computer analysis”, and of course, computers are never wrong and are far more accurate than a few crusty old linesmen who only do actual visual inspection.

Your correspondent has been given information that recently, Chorus asked for permission to attach a Telecom line to an aged pole (is there any other sort in Dunedin?). The report from the field was that the pole was knackered. However, the computer had not been consulted, and the strategy department duly ran it through the algorithm, and it returned a classification of 0. Bad computer !! That was not “the ideal result !”. A bit of tough computer love ensued, and the pole was re-run through the algorithm again, and the pole re-emerged with a barely adequate rating of 2. There you go, said strategy, all fixed and ready to roll for Chorus ! “Not quite” said the people whose staff had to risk their lives getting up the pole, the pole is still had it ….regardless of what the algorithm says. Undeterred, the mad scientists of strategy ran the pole through the algorithm again and this time…. it yielded a rating of 4 ! Problem solved ! said the mad scientists, climb as high as you like – hook 10 Telecom lines on there !

The department responsible for the lines staff, then had had enough of the madness, and wrote an email that has become famous within Delta ….it said

“IF THIS POLE GETS RUN THROUGH THE COMPUTER ALGORITHIM AGAIN, THERE IS A VERY STRONG CHANCE THAT IT WILL SPRING TO LIFE AND GROW BRANCHES.”

This is the mad hatters world that Grady Cameron, Parton, Frow, Kempton, McLauchlan have created and presided over at Delta. A March hare would be envious.

If Delta had a belfry, bats would fly out of it.

[ends]

Related Posts and Comments:
25.10.16 Delta #EpicPowerFail 2 : Plaudits to Saunders & Elder : Delta FunnyMoney
22.10.16 DCC struggles with Governance…. Delta/Aurora/DCHL…
21.10.16 Dunedin City Council must hang the companies out to dry
20.10.16 Delta #EpicPowerFail : Delta fulfils Adam Smith’s 1776 Prophecy
19.10.16 Grady Cameron and Graham Crombie : Eyes tightly shut #FAIL
13.10.16 COMPLETE Dis-satisfaction with DCC, DCHL, DVML, DVL, Delta….
9.6.16 Aurora Energy Ltd warned by regulator

█ For more, enter the terms *delta*, *aurora*, *epic fraud* or *dchl* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: slidesharecdn.com – design open badges University College London | overlay: perdue.edu – utilitypolelodging, tweaked by whatifdunedin

40 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, DCC, DCHL, Delta, Democracy, Dunedin, Economics, Finance, Geography, Health, Hot air, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Travesty, What stadium

Delta #EpicPowerFail 2 : Plaudits to Saunders & Elder : Delta FunnyMoney

victims-tweaked-cagle-com-3

Received from Christchurch Driver [CD]
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 at 11:08 p.m.

Readers, we must again raise our teacups – yes, a bit of condensed milk would be nice, makes the shareholder revenge all the sweeter ! – to Vaughan Elder of the ODT, who rose to the What if? challenge, and lifted the lid (25.10.16) on some astounding revelations at Delta : Management “instructing” staff not to deal with urgent, “compromised” poles but instead, continue with programmed pole replacement. The following is the intellectually threadbare accounting intellect practised by Grady Cameron and the directors (and others) : We only have X funds allocated, and those funds have to replace Y poles and Z number of urgent compromised poles. No one knows the number of Z, but everyone knows Y because we have to publish it in our public records. Therefore we will continue with non-urgent Y, because if we reduce it awkward questions we can’t be bothered answering will be asked, and we will just defer – yet again – urgent work. She’ll be right. There’s not that many Z number poles falling down – we’ve just made a resolution that they are within our risk tolerances – no one’s been killed yet (Oh yes, Steelo, shame about that) – moving on – pass the madeira cake with the almond icing over here will you Trevor ?

Readers, it does appear that Nigel Saunders has confirmed that Delta management are telling staff to break the law, and refusing to put it into writing. Mr Saunders wrote in a memo “line supervisors are currently acting on a verbal instruction only which no-one seems to be willing to back up in writing, and if something goes wrong we all know what happens next”. What happens next in the event of an accident, is that Grady would solemnly pronounce that Procedures Have Not Been Followed, and Immediate Disciplinary Action Has Been Taken, and We Are VERY Sorry About the Failure By Line Staff To Follow Clear & Comprehensive Delta Regulations. (Code: Nothing to do with me, NOT MANAGEMENT’S FAULT….). That Mr Saunders had to put this in a memo and put his neck on the line shows what a toxic, dysfunctional place Delta has become.

If we were in any doubt that Delta and Aurora must be terminated, it came with Mr Saunders next revelation, that even when compromised poles are stabilised the solution actually involved waratahs and number 8 wire. Delta and Aurora must be the laughingstock of the lines industry.

The depth of the arrogance and cynicism displayed by Grady Cameron and directors Parton, Frow, Kempton and McLauchlan towards the shareholders is nowhere more evident than the 2016 accounts :

The directors gave Grady Cameron a massive pay rise for failing to meet 5 of the 8 Financial Objectives set by the Delta board last year; but Grady says in the report “we have increased shareholder equity with a prudent approach to risk and revenue growth”, and we get the euphemism meter off the scale as Grady attempts to explain why operating cash flows, the life blood of the business, are down from the forecast $9.974M to just $3.439M. Grady came up with this pearler, “Operating cash flows were $3.4M for FY16, below the forecasted $10M, due to temporary differences in the timing of receipts from customers.” Grady, would those “customers” be effectively just ONE customer, and would that customer have been Noble Investments, and is the temporary difference in timing, your sub-truthful way of saying that Delta will not receive all of its expected funds until, as the DCHL chairman admitted, until 2024 ? Shall we expect to see this disgraceful quarter truth featuring in your reports until 2024 ?

As well as the debacle over the cash flow, Grady and Delta failed spectacularly on the debt : The objective was debt at $21.728M, but debt is at….$29.165M, which is over $2M MORE than last year, ($26.5M), when Grady was singing the same cheerful song, all is well, we have our debt well in hand.

The truly depressing thing, is that if we look at what 3 financial objectives Delta did achieve, there is no cause for celebration there either :

Net Profit : achieved (just) $4.67m, vs objective of $4.61M. Now as any accountant knows, with turnover of $100M, it will not be hard to adjust the average $8.5M work in progress (WIP) to get whatever profit figure you want, within reason, so we should take no comfort that the $4.67M is a real figure, but that it might suffer an embarrassing reversal next year. (Remember readers, “I’ll be gone, you’ll be gone”…. that refrain in the boardroom must be getting louder….)

Capital Expenditure : Delta achieved its “target” of not spending MORE than $6.421M, by only spending $4.101M. This is an odd measure to gauge the health of a capital intensive business – to gauge how LITTLE the company spends on essential assets needed to perform their work efficiently. It shows the company is very constrained and has almost no capital base of liquid funds or retained earnings to use for capex.

Finally, Dividends : Yes, The target $2.5M DCHL dividend was achieved, because once again, the debt levels went up $2.7M to accommodate this, from $26.5M last year to $29.2M. Directors, if you want to deny this, show us, don’t tell us, and by the way, where is the “Investment in Financial Instrument” of $2.19M recorded as an asset ? Back to the dividend, at $5,000 each, this would have given Dunedin 500 new power poles and a much safer electrical environment. Grady, for all your faff about your environmental performance (heard the news, fleet fuel consumption down from 9.68 to 9.62 l/100km!) – what about the ratepayers’ street environment who have to dodge hundreds of your disgraceful poles with fear and trepidation. The fear and trepidation will soon belong to you – because there will be some waste management of the management waste, to coin a phrase, and it will involve “recycling” you to an “out of region facility”, and “recycling” those dismal directors back to their day jobs.

[ends]

Related Posts and Comments:
22.10.16 DCC struggles with Governance…. Delta/Aurora/DCHL…
21.10.16 Dunedin City Council must hang the companies out to dry
20.10.16 Delta #EpicPowerFail : Delta fulfils Adam Smith’s 1776 Prophecy
19.10.16 Grady Cameron and Graham Crombie : Eyes tightly shut #FAIL
13.10.16 COMPLETE Dis-satisfaction with DCC, DCHL, DVML, DVL, Delta….
9.6.16 Aurora Energy Ltd warned by regulator

█ For more, enter the terms *delta*, *aurora*, *epic fraud* or *dchl* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: cagle.com – cold comfort by Nate Beeler, tweaked by whatifdunedin

22 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, DCHL, Delta, Democracy, Dunedin, Economics, Finance, Geography, Health, Hot air, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Travesty, What stadium