A Timely Haul: Transporting Wind Energy Components from the Port of Vancouver to Arlington, OR
Wind Power/Renewable Energy
- Aspen and Temisko model double Schnabel
Arlington, OR, is home to numerous wind farms, including the third largest in the United States. With a high demand for wind energy, new wind energy components are regularly required to outfit new and established wind farms in the area.
With limited labor available at the ports along the west coast, our client—an international transportation and logistics company—needed an experienced specialized transportation company to deliver 82 wind energy components from the Port of Vancouver to a distribution center in Arlington. Since the timeline to deliver was shrinking and a loss of production value was on the line, Omega Morgan’s Portland specialized transportation team stepped up to the plate to deliver a world-class solution.
SUPERLOADS AND SPECIALIZED PLANNING
Once our client reached out to Omega Morgan to coordinate pickup and delivery dates and provide details of what the crew would be hauling, our team got to work. The 82 wind energy components included 41 tower bases—37’8” long by 15’ in diameter and a weight of 136,686 pounds—and 41 tower midsections—55’2” long by 13’9” in diameter and a weight of 137,789 pounds.
Due to the short timeline for completion, the project manager immediately began securing superload permits for Washington and Oregon. Superload permits are required when the total weight of the transport configuration is over 200,000 pounds. These permit requests take around 30 days to complete, so timeliness was essential.
Because Omega Morgan operates the destination distribution center (DC) and the Port of Vancouver is a common loading origin for projects, our specialized transportation team did not need to perform site visits. However, we completed a detailed route survey to ensure a seamless journey for all 82 loads.
The most challenging part of the planning process came from a large paving project directly outside of the port. It was hit or miss as to when it would impact the crew’s travel. Our project manager remained in coordination with the paving crew, construction contractor, and other carriers hauling wind cargo out of the port. Thanks to this coordination, our specialized transportation team had a hauling schedule for navigating around these factors.
Because the project start was delayed, the team had to continually update the superload permits in preparation for interstate state transportation. Finally, in early August, our crew prepared to load the first pair of components for delivery.
HAULIN’ MASS—THE OMEGA MORGAN WAY
When the first loading day arrived, our crews arrived at the port with our Aspen and Temisko double Schnabel trailers. Each trailer required four crew members, including a driver, front pilot, steerman, and a rear pilot car. To load each component, the port workers stripped off the hardware from the transport ship and placed the component on the ground. Omega Morgan’s specialized transportation team then hooked the trailers to each end of the tube to lock it into place before raising the component off of its saddles. The port crew members would then remove the saddles and give the green light to roll out.
Once the trailers arrived at the DC, our crews jumped in to help with the offloading. After the specialized transportation team staged each trailer in the correct location, the DC crew would maneuver two saddles under the component. Then, the trailers towered down, allowing the saddles to hold the total weight of the tube before pulling away from each end and reconnecting. Our crews would then head back to the port for another heavy load. At any given time, two to three of our double Schnabel trailers were making the 140-plus mile trek with one component each, for a total of 82 loads.
Thanks to our safe and efficient transportation, Omega Morgan delivered the necessary wind components in under two months. With no loss in production value, the tubes were then transported for wind farm assembly in perfect condition and in a timely manner. Our client was extremely happy with our transportation work as well as our operation of the distribution center. A job well done, all around.