why 'o why PFI?

Discussion related to street lighting luminaires and components.
Post Reply
User avatar
amtrakuk
Posts: 882
Joined: Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:13 am
Favourite Manufacturer: Light Ideas Philips Fitzgerald
Area of interest: Discharge lighting
Oldest item: c 1975 Light Ideas

why 'o why PFI?

Post by amtrakuk » Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:13 pm

I asked my brother why have so many got on the PFI band wagon. My argument was, you could pay Fred and Bert £20k a year each to run round in a van, relamping, swapping out fittings etc, surely that's cheaper than the ££££ per lantern a PFI installation costs over 25 years.

Less total cost - the council is no longer has to fork out for annual training costs, PPE, Holiday Cover, Pensions, Risk assessments, Pensions, Equipment purchase and maintenance etc.

Parts - No ongoing costs for increasingly more expensive and hard to come by parts for old fittings especially in areas of high vandalism.

Costs - although initial costs are high these are seen as an investment as once the new infrastructure is in place there is very little ongoing costs.

Turn around - Reducing the number of consumables needed means greater available and quicker repair

and finally...

The Good OLD EU - To comply with EU legislation is costly but attracts more EU "perks"
EU - Ethics Undermined

User avatar
LinearSLI-H
Posts: 1034
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:20 am
Favourite Manufacturer: PHILIPS and VOSSLOH SCHWABE
Area of interest: HID and Associated control gear
Oldest item: Philips 160W MBT/U 1951
Location: Cheshire

Re: why 'o why PFI?

Post by LinearSLI-H » Wed Jul 30, 2014 4:11 pm

As I understand it, its a way for the council to wash their hands of street lighting duties, but still get to charge it on your council tax!
Don`t the private company have to `buy` all the street lights in a given area, then be responsible for looking after them all, with only a small contribution from the council, whos lights they were?

These private companies must have a fair penny to be able to afford the £300 plus cost of all these new LED lanterns!
I`m not even sure who looks after our street light here anymore?, at one time Cheshire Highways would look after the big stuff, and Congleton borough council would do the side street lighting, so first of all, I don`t recall seeing CBCs cherry picker out and about for over 10 years now?, and at one time, contractors, David Liningtons would work for Cheshire Highways, then in the early 90 it went to MEWS, (mechanical and electrical works services), now these have gone and all the maintenance teams I come across are in unmarked cherry pickers, so who are these?, is it Cheshire Highways, or Bam Nuttalls, or another contractor, I just don`t know anymore! :rofl
FEED THE MOOMIN!!

User avatar
amtrakuk
Posts: 882
Joined: Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:13 am
Favourite Manufacturer: Light Ideas Philips Fitzgerald
Area of interest: Discharge lighting
Oldest item: c 1975 Light Ideas

Re: why 'o why PFI?

Post by amtrakuk » Fri Aug 01, 2014 9:28 am

About 3 or 4 years ago Siemens won the PFI for traffic lights in Manchester from Peek. From what I understand talking to the contracts manager of the PFI, I was told the amount of energy saved for GMC by retrofitting the existing Peek Elite heads and replacing the old Mellor signals with Siemens Helios CLS LED aspects would pay for the PFI within 10 years. So on that occasion it seems switching from halogen to LED appears to have been a no brainer - in practice I can only go with what I was told. now GMC have a uniform traffic light system with Siemens controllers, Siemens signals and Siemens engineers - in theory everything should work perfectly, instead of the mix of Monitron, Siemens, Peek, TSEU equipment heavily modified to work correctly.

When Peek first won the PFI for Manchester all the bulb fitters and associated engineers were TUPEd over to Peek, now Siemens have the PFI all the Peek employees have again been migrated to Siemens. This TUPE seems to be common practice when a PFI is issued.

As for the initial cost, yeah it is high but I'm assuming this is work that would have to be carried out anyway over the life of the PFI, so it seems to be a case of a do it all now "On Credit", and pay back the "Credit Balance" over the PFI term which is meant to work out cheaper.

Or as I like to put it, you drive down to the supermarket each day to buy an apple, so over a week you have done 14 journeys (to and from the supermarket) and got 7 apples. OR you can make 2 journeys the beginning of the week and buy 7 apples - job done. You have the same result of 7 apples but less fuel used and less wear and tear on the car.

I can see the financial sense in PFI's but on the other had it is a great shame allot of classic equipment has been removed. Here in Leeds SSE have gone for Philips Iridium running SOX on the main roads and mini Iridium using cosmo in residential areas. On one street I almost cried when I saw a fair few good condition cast iron lamp posts the type with the ladder stand arms, swan neck extensions holing with what looked like top entry beta 5s, knowing the enviable was going to happen and it did - technopali galvanized pole and mini iridium :vomit

I did say Leeds was totally PFI'd but oddly enough there are still 2 working MA60s either side of this bridge - https://www.google.com/maps/@53.793818, ... qwlYAg!2e0

GM must be quite old as this area was done 18 months ago. These are the only two i know working on a public road in Leeds.
EU - Ethics Undermined

Post Reply