Week 8 was a busy one to say the least. We planned most of our biggest maintenances for the month during this week. I am scheduled to work in Indiana next week so our service manager wanted us to get our difficult jobs from the Lansing area out of the way before I leave. This meant four out of the five days we had to go directly to the farms in the morning and not go to the shop first. Otherwise we would have had to take two days at one farm.
Different days brought different challenges. One farm was having an issue with their milk quality and we quickly discovered the issue. The vacuum line that is intended to feed the milk line which sucks the milk from the parlor to the storage tank, was full of old milk and other nasty residue. This line is supposed to be squeaky clean. We spent around two hours trying to flush all the gunk out of the lines, and there was a lot of it. My co-worker and I were both covered in old milk by the end of the process. Needless to say nobody wanted to spend much time anywhere close to us. For us, it was successful and we plan to see their bacteria counts at a normal level again.
Some parlors have a basement that holds much of the equipment that needs to be serviced so everything stays clean and safe. All the parlors we went to this week had a basement instead of just having all the equipment on ground level where the cows stand. This did allow us to move more efficiently and not get in the way of any of the farm’s employees. We did much of the same routine things we always do so there wasn’t a ton of learning experiences, but it was a good week of hard work and nice weather.