Case Studies

Fighting a Freeze: Mahaffey Lunch Structure Solves Need for Texas Refinery

Texas experienced a record-breaking freeze in 2021. While the temperature held steady around 20 degrees, the lone star state experienced burst pipes, power outages and other issues that are traditionally uncharacteristic of the region.

For one refinery in Port Arthur, burst pipes necessitated shutting down a unit and bringing in a herd of contractors to get everything fixed. But to get the unit up and running again, they needed a place for the incoming contractors to eat lunch. And they needed it fast!

So the client called on Mahaffey, and in almost no time, our expert crews were on site and ready to work.

The Challenge

The burst pipes were causing delays for the client, so the client needed Mahaffey’s help immediately. To begin restarting the affected unit, the client needed a fully operational lunch structure on site within one week.

Without a break structure for the incoming workers, they would have to leave the worksite for lunch, costing the client valuable time and money in their race against the freeze. Instead, the client required a safe, blast-resistant structure where the contractors could break without leaving the site, which would help them optimize efficiency and eliminate waste.

One of the maintenance managers had worked with Mahaffey in the past and knew Mahaffey’s track record for delivering reliable structures on strict timelines. They told Mahaffey that they needed a structure in a hurry, and in only a few days, Mahaffey’s team had boots on the ground.

The Client's Structure Needed:





Durability Against
the Elements 




Our Solution

Lori-Dominy (1)Within days, Mahaffey was on the ground to begin installing a large lunch tent for the client’s temporary personnel. Mahaffey’s solution included a 66-foot by 82-foot structure with flooring, banquet tables and chairs for the workers to comfortably eat. Instead of using stake anchors, ballasting held the tent in place.

Lunch Structure 1

When the client called, several of Mahaffey’s installation teams were already on a different project. To accommodate this expedited installation, Mahaffey had to pull one of those installation teams onto this project, and Lori Dominy was the perfect project manager to lead this team. In spite of the freezing temperatures and accompanying power outages, Mahaffey’s crew was able to install the structure in only four daysTo meet the tight deadline, Mahaffey worked hand-in-hand with the client. The client used theirforklift and driver to help unload the truck, and Mahaffey’s expert crew members sprung immediately into action. The crew worked like a well-oiled machine, and the installation ran smoothly without any major issues arising.

The Result


The client was thrilled with the final solution and how Mahaffey was able to get the structureon site and installed in a timely manner. Originally, the client only wanted the struc

ture for two months but was so pleased with the results that they have since extended the lease for an additional two months. With the help of Mahaffey’s efficient team and rapid turnaround, the client saved time, money and productivity — all during one of Texas’s worst natural disasters in recent history.

The Takeaways

For nearly a century, Mahaffey has built a reputation as a trusted provider for delivering reliable solutions to solve urgent problems. Our structures serve unique purposes for clients across the country, and in storms, snow and shine, Mahaffey’s expert teams work around-the-clock to keep our clients’ operations running smoothly.

When unforeseen circumstances threaten your company’s bottom line, you need a partner who will drive results and remain unphased by worksite challenges. Don’t just settle for a job that is “good enough.” For a partner who will consistently strive to exceed your expectations, call one of Mahaffey’s expert project managers today.


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Topics: Military and Government