Plans Set for 2nd ‘Superload’

MOUNDSVILLE – One “superload” down, another to go.

Williams Energy’s de-ethanizer – a 510,000 pound, 41-yard-long tower that will be used to refine ethane at the company’s Oak Grove facility in Marshall County – made it to its final destination at about 1 p.m. Saturday. It arrived about a day early and without any major mishaps during its three-day journey. Williams spokeswoman Helen Hump-hreys said the company expects a second de-ethanizer tower to be delivered to the Benwood rail yard sometime next month.

“After a year of planning involving a variety of people with different types of expertise and working with that team, it’s been a good experience,” she said. “That’s not to say we wouldn’t do some things differently. It took a lot folks with a lot of different and specialized skills – that’s what brought it from the rail yard to Oak Grove.”

Along the route, which included use of W.Va. 2, W.Va. 86, W.Va. 88, U.S. 250 and finally Fork Ridge Road, people from the community lined up to see the massive piece of machinery negotiate turns on a modular vehicle made by Goldhofer.

Humphreys noted a remote controlled system moved the vehicle in all directions, and it had a hydraulic lift system to keep the trailer level at all times.

“There were a lot residents excited about seeing the tower and seeing how it was moved,” Humphreys said.

The tower traveled at 3-5 mph for the 30-mile trip.

“It was a relatively uneventful move. We’re optimistic the next move also will be uneventful,” she said.

Humphreys said she will keep area residents apprised of plans for the next tower’s trip. She added, to her knowledge, that this “superload” did not sustain any damage during its trip. She also was not aware of any damage to property, but noted a couple street signs were taken up when the “superload” was making some tight turns.