Before joining Equilibar, Jason Kelley worked for years as a mechanic for Carowinds, a top tier theme park near Charlotte, where he performed maintenance on roller coasters and other high-speed rides. Not surprisingly, an extreme attention to detail and safety protocols played a big role in his responsibilities. “The scope of work at a theme park is impressive,” he said. “When people think the park is closed, that’s when it was the busiest for us. Every bolt and every nut have to have a safety check performed.”
That same attention to detail and focus on procedure have translated well in his new job at Equilibar. Jason assembles back pressure regulators and fluid control valves that play a key role in research as well as in a wide variety of industries including biotech, aerospace, alternative energy, vacuum processes, and much more. He also performs testing, cleaning and inspection until each unique product is perfectly ready to leave the production cell.
Beyond work, Jason’s favorite thing to do is to spend time with his young daughter and explore the Asheville area with her. “She loves the river so we’ve been spending a lot of time playing in the river on the weekends, and I’m looking forward to learning how to fly fish.” Jason also enjoys working with small engines and gardening. During non-quarantine times, he kept the Equilibar team motivated with home-baked cakes and pies and hopes to do so again before too long.
Like the rest of the Equilibar team, Jason is eager to take on a challenge. At Carowinds, he once volunteered to climb to the top of the flagpole on the 260-foot Sky Tower attraction to untangle the flag. “I was also assigned to do cable and counterweight inspections on the Windseeker, the second tallest ride in the park,” Jason said. “I would ride to the top and climb all over the hub during our morning maintenance checklist. From there I would climb a ladder on the side to the very top, called the crow’s nest, and enter the ‘tube.’ From there I would climb down the inside of the tower, checking pulleys, cables, motors, and gearboxes as I descended.”
Looking toward the future, at Equilibar Jason looks forward to learning about the most specialized models of regulators and cross training to be able to fill multiple production roles.
“It’s interesting and rewarding to work diligently to solve the customers’ issues,” Jason said. “I enjoy what we’re doing here.”