Here is a line side industrial
activity that can pop up anywhere on a railroad. In Whittier Alaska a large
steel barge had been abandoned on the beach at the head of the bay not too far
from West Camp Road. Central Environmental, Inc. Environmental Services was
contracted to remove the rusted out hulk. An old railroad spur runs adjacent
to the road and gondolas were staged there to receive the scrap from the barge
demolition. A Cat excavator with large steel cutting shear was used to dismember
the barge into manageable pieces which were hauled to a transfer site next to
the road. At this location they were further compacted, folded and crushed.
The excavator was then fitted with a bucket and thumb which carefully placed
the pieces on end in the gondolas. Because of the low density and honey comb
nature of the pieces the crew maximized the car loading by stuffing smaller
pieces inside. These are unusual gondola loads. This fleeting scene could be
recreated on a model railroad nearly anywhere.
-- Pat Durand
Page created 5/28/08 and last updated 5/28/08