The road on hydroelectric power plant

There are many old residents in staff of Kapchagay hydroelectric power plant, the first unit of which started up 40 years ago. For example, 11 of them gave it 30 and more years of life, but only the labor experience of one of 176 workers has stepped over a 40-year boundary. This is the director of the station Vasiliy Vasilyevich KAZNACHEEV.

If it was required to derive a formula of his life, then in my opinion, it could have the form of an extremely simple equation: the working career of Kaznacheev is equal to history of this hydroelectric power plant. Moreover, I will notice that the equality is almost absolute. In 1965, by the beginning of water and power development on the Ili River in the Kapchagay gorge, constricting the valley of the biggest river of Semirechye to 600 meters, he did not got for a good reason: he was too young for performance of such mission and studied at high school. Then there was an army, obligatory for the man of that time, which Kaznacheev without any stretches considers school of life. Among other things, it gave the lad a fatal profession.

It was at the service, where he was admitted to school of divers of the Black Sea Fleet, where it was extremely difficult to get. Only 13 from five thousand applicants have passed the commission. The rigidity of selection as at astronauts. After completion of study, there was “pumping experience” in the emergency rescue service of Navy. After the service, he moved into the detachment of underwater technical works of the Ministry of Energy of the USSR. Here he already had a direct road to the Kapchagay gorge. The fact is that the employees of this service were on regular business trips to the hydraulic and heat power stations that were being built all over the country. As soon as the corresponding scope of work has appeared on new hydroelectric power plant, he was sent at the head of group of divers.

The scope of work, naturally, could appear after river closing and the beginning of filling of a water reservoir. It happened on Ili River on September 1969. And the next year on June 4 there were strong guys armed with diving equipment, the equipment for cutting and welding of metal under water on that top-priority Komsomol project at the head by Vasily Kaznacheev. There is no sense in amplifying on fact that the most complex, hard and dangerous work was performed by underwater builders. It is clear also to that person who did not see the diver alive. Filling thereservoir bed of the station went intensively, that year was rich in precipitation. It was necessary to keep the dam leaving under water and six tunnels pumping water under vigilant control, to carry out all necessary works there. Divers were kind of elite at the construction site.

Everybody envied divers in an amicable way as well as installers and high-altitude climbers on large-scale constructions who was going waddling with belts and safety chains on shoulders, and always were keeping all team separately from others. They were in the thick of romance, which stood high inthe days of numeroustop-priority projects. As high-altitude installers, they looked top down at other builders in spite of the location of the workplace, which was lower than others were. Naturally, young divers were prestigious candidates for fiancé, and always were under cross fire of all-seeing sidelong maiden glances. Strong, beautiful Vasiliy, the athlete of a wide profile – the football player, the fighter and the boxer, also riveted their attention. Soon one of local beauties – the construction foreman, the graduate of construction institute became his wife.

At the very end of 1970, the start-up of the first hydraulic unit took place. On this occasion, many people have gathered on building, there were flame speeches, a concert under the open sky and common joy of the first victory. The project has taken the first step moving into a state of the operating power object. There were still no walls of a main generator hall because it was necessary to erect other three turbines and the temporary canvas cover was erected over the working hydraulic unit.

On the eve of this event divers did not get out of diving suits in shifts, inspected everything that was under water and was related to work of the station, its reliable and safe work. They have passed that examination perfectly well. It was shown by 40 years of the subsequent work of hydroelectric power station. The dam with the width at the basis – 460 meters, height – 56 meters, and water difference – 36 meters, all these years reliably hold 18 cubic kilometers of water, and could contain 12 more cubic kilometers, but the Ili River is not capable to deliver it to the water-engineering system without damage to Balkhash Lake. The dam has high reliability; it is capable to sustain an earthquake of 8 points. And it is, so called, designed capacity, the real capacity is much higher. Moreover, six conduits did not disappoint all this time.During the next year, other three hydraulic units were commissioned. The mission of divers was coming to the end. And the front of work at builders was narrowed to an acute angle. What a diving and construction family of Kaznacheev should do? Will they go to new buildings? However, the city in which there will be a work to both, where it is possible to receive the apartment soon is under construction on the bank of a water reservoir. They have decided on a family meeting that: the city of their love and happiness quite suitable for building a family nest and raising children. Therefore, the diver Kaznacheev anchors at the dam of the hydropower station, which he examined for strength and remains working on its other side, that is, at the station itself. Especially as her director Boris Osipov, suggested to train for a new profession of the operator more than once. He noticed the business and hardworking builder in a diving suit, correspondence-course student long ago. As the operator, he began as a foreman and the strengthened practice on repair. In the first years of operation of hydraulic units, there were many works on adjustment, operational development of the equipment at the station. Even blades of turbines had to be changed. It was the best practice for the correspondence-course student of higher education institution. Vasily Kaznacheev did not avoid any, even the most hard and dirty work if it gave the chance to see equipment cherished secrets, to study its work in detail, having passed it through own eyes and hands.

In 20 years of work, Kaznacheev has passed all steps of an office ladder before becoming the deputy director 18 years ago.In those days the system of selection and education of a personnel, in other words, career development supported by continuous professional development and close attention to the applicant worked: work at one position a certain number of years, prove yourself in work well – so, move further.

It is as in any army, where receiving the next rank demands a specific length of service and jumps through badges of rank on shoulder straps are extremely rare. They were allowed only concerning extremely talented and proved in extreme situations people. For example, it was allowed to astronauts. Everywhere there was a reserve of personnel on promotion, with the continuous study necessary for professional development. All this guaranteed high professionalism and competence of personnel. It never occurred to anyone to bring a director from somewhere, especially from another industry. The profession “executive employee” when the “omnivorous” specialist is passed from one “opera” to another due to ties and all to the promotion, met unless in jokes.

Eight years of work as the deputy director and the termination of economic higher education institution were a candidate experience before a management position in which Vasily Vasilyevich has been walking 10 years. All these years, four hydroelectric units with a capacity of 91 MW each, work perfectly, without accidents and emergencies. The Kapchagay HPP costing 145 million rubles to the country has paid off repeatedly, it is the most reliable and economic plant in the “Almaty Power stations” system.

All these years the equipment was updated, and the service staff improved their skills. Including director. Quite recently, he has received the international certificate on the right to manage power plants in the conditions of the market. You cannot do without constant study in power industry, because everything that provided the work of the station has changed for 40 years. As the shift supervisor Alshin Dosbolov, who came here 30 years ago as a supervisor too, expressed: “The hydroelectric power station began with an arithmometer, and now it is run by the most modern electronics!". Here, even turning on of the standby unit when loading increases in network, occurs automatically. Employees of the station leave hydroelectric power station only at retirement and change of a residence for very good reason. It is the most stable labor collective in the city!

The fact is not only in decent salary at power plant and there are no delays in paying it – the products are delivered without interruption, and the need for it is always felt. However, in the 90th years there were also long delays in payment.Notbecausetheunitsstopped.They just took the energy, but did not hurry to pay. We had to be principled and beat out the money through the court. Fortunately, eventually came the understanding that those who stand at the origins of power industry cannot be put on a hungry dietary and if they put it, only at the very last moment, when nobody already needs electricity. That is, in case of the end of the world!

Here, the patriots of the profession, hydroelectric power station, the city work as a match for the director. Vasily Vasilievich was repeatedly offered more significant posts in big cities both in Kazakhstan and abroad. However, he is faithful to the station, which he built with his own hands, the city that grew up before his eyes and there is no beautiful than this. He works at the HPP and lives in his city. He is able to afford to leave work after all, and if it is necessary to be at work only in a few minutes. Employees of the station by all collective cherish the order, discipline – so it is easier to work, because here is fertile moral atmosphere. It is supported by the trade-union organization, which, as before, cares about the welfare of its workers, observance of their legitimate rights. When leaving for vacation, employees are given a health benefit, children spend their summer holidays for free, the company helps employees at treatment of serious diseases. Station territory all in green plantings and flowerbeds. The pheasants, partridge and even foxes get here. They are used to the fact that here they are not confused neither with hail, nor with a hand wave. “In the past, there were a lot of rumors about the expediency of constructing the Kapchagay HPP, its harm to Balkhash”, - said Vasily Kaznacheev. – The time has shown that the costs are minimal; the start-up of water is made according to the recommendations of specialists, in order to keep the mode habitual to the living world in the river. Even in arid years, at average 700 cubic meters of Ili water passed every second through the turbines. They have generated more than 42 billion kilowatts of hours of the cheap electric power in 40 years. For Almaty city and the region as a whole, which had all this time and still has deficiency of electricity, the value of HPP is beyond all measures.
It is a merit of the former big country, its builders and operators, among whom Vasily Vasilyevich Kaznacheev took the important place and still take it.