ThrowBack Thursday: Extreme Hauling

Welcome back to the next installment of ExpressTruckTax ThrowBack Thursday! This week has just been hectic, gathering as much information as possible for next week’s Road Check and the 2290 HVUT filing season coming up has got me busier than a one-toothed man in a corn-on-the-cob eating contest. I think the entire Trucking Nation would agree, it’s time to take deep breath, relax and enjoy a throwback to the largest hauls in North America.

In 2012, Perkins Specialized Transportation of Northfield, Minn., executed one of the biggest hauls ever made in the U.S.  For this heavy-haul, not just any truck would do. A total of three Mack Titans and additional trucks to transport four 800,000 lb decommissioned generator vessels form San Onofre, Calif., to Clive, Utah. This haul took three years to plan and the building of a 300 ft custom trailer that was as wide as two lane road. The trailer had four separate dollies that could be moved independently, with a total of 192 wheels. At a top speed of 25 mph the 850 mi journey from Calif. to Utah took about 11 days.  Just think, the generators were so massive they had to transport them one at a time, that’s over 6,800 miles!

Let’s go back a little bit further to the largest haul on record in North America. Picture this – Tennessee 1980, its June and the sky is bright blue and crystal clear. You’re outside getting the morning paper and enjoying the cool morning breeze, then your hear the sounds of engines, and in the distance you spot something slowly moving towards you. “What could that be?” you say. That slow creeping metal monster is the largest, heaviest load to ever be hauled in North America, run for your lives! Okay, maybe not run, but what you are about to witness is a 2,314,000 lb reactor pressure vessel being transported from Knoxville to a nuclear power plant in Eastern Tennessee. The load measured 80 ft in length and 26 ft in diameter. The reactor (measuring 80 ft in length and 26 ft in diameter) rested on 2 transport trailers with a total of 384 tires. Each trailer had 12 axles with a load capacity of 825 tons. It took 5 four-wheel tractor dozers to move the reactor with an additional 2 tractors for steep grades. The entire convoy for the transport consisted of 30 vehicles. Even in 1980 it was Go Big or Go Home.

Extreme hauling is an art form. It’s amazing how they have engineered the trailers to maneuver through public roads. Thank you for joining me for this week’s ExpressTruckTax ThrowBack Thursday. Be sure to come back by, you never know where we’re going to go next.

For more ThrowBack Thursday adventure, check these out:

ThrowBack Thursday: 1970s Trucking Films

ThrowBack Thursday: National Transportation Week

ThrowBack Thursday: Trucking in the 1950s


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