Boilermakers arrive for Port Angeles convention
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Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News
A massive tent takes up the front parking lot of the Port Angeles CrabHouse Restaurant on the grounds of the Red Lion Hotel for a convention of boilermakers Tuesday in Port Angeles.

By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — More than 200 steam boiler engineers and operators arrived in Port Angeles on Tuesday for a three-day annual convention at the Red Lion Hotel.

The Western Regional Boiler Association convention is a gathering of people who operate natural gas and wood-fired boilers, and those who produce the technology and equipment steam boiler engineers use, said Lisa Harvey-Boyd, executive secretary for the association.

“It's the people who make steam,” Harvey-Boyd said.

The convention will continue today and Thursday.

Steam boilers produce energy and heating for operations including hospitals, schools, government buildings and industrial operations, she said.

Local companies

Local examples of companies that use steam boilers include the Nippon Paper Industries USA plant, Forks High School and Olympic Medical Center.

“The purpose of the convention is for networking and education [for those] who are involved in the power industry in the Western region,” Harvey-Boyd said.

A 7,800-square-foot pavilion-tent was erected in the Red Lion parking lot to house dozens of displays by vendors to share their newest technologies for the steam engines.

There were more vendors this year than in the past, Boyd said, and additional space had to be found to house those vendors.

The convention is held in a different city each year and is hosted by a local steam engineer who traditionally offers tours of his or her steam plant.

This year's host is John Boyd, utilities superintendent at Nippon in Port Angeles.

The engineers will tour the Nippon steam boiler plants today.

It was not yet known whether the new Nippon co-generation plant will be operational during the tour, Harvey-Boyd said.

The biomass boiler plant was shut down for two weeks for maintenance and upgrades, and is still in the process of being restarted, she said.

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Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at arwyn.rice@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: March 11. 2014 5:47PM
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