EDMONTON, Alta. – A rather large delivery is being made this week in Saskatchewan.
Premay Equipment, a specialized transportation company located in Western Canada is helping move a giant crystallizer from JNE Welding of Saskatoon to K+S Potash Canada’s potash mine near Bethune, Sask. The move began on Tuesday morning.
The crystallizer, which is brings potash to the surface during the solution process, is more than 10 metres wide, 10 metres high, close to 20 metres long and weighs nearly 140,000 kilograms.
“It’s geographically one of the biggest moves that has happened in Saskatchewan,” said Lockie McKinnon, terminal director of Premay Equipment who helped plan the trek for two years.
McKinnon said that the move took two years of planning to execute because of all the organization involved.
“You got to check with all the infrastructure, like the highways and power and utilities and you have to find a route, as well,” he said. “You’ve got to look at the infrastructure to make sure it can handle (the weight). The biggest thing is getting everything organized and getting all the people in place. And making sure the power crews and police are in place and making sure there is a lot of communication.”
Because of the dimensions of the crystallizer, McKinnon said Premay had to run the route several times in the months leading up to the move to ensure a smooth ride once the trek got started.
“We probably ran the route once a month just to make sure there was no change,” he said.
The size of the crystallizer means the commute was a slow one – travelling 75-100 km a day going around 30-40 km an hour. McKinnon added that the delivery is being contained between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. to avoid causing traffic and so school buses aren’t disturbed.
There is also a multitude of escort vehicles assisting with the trek.
“There’s a truck pulling it at the front, and two trucks behind pushing it,” McKinnon said. “I also have four pilot cars on it and a police escort.”
Premay is used to making these large deliveries, and McKinnon said this is not the largest item they have moved, though it is one of the largest.
The delivery of the crystallizer is expected to be complete later this afternoon.
Sonia Straface is the associate editor of Truck News and Truck West magazines. She graduated from Ryerson University's journalism program in 2013 and enjoys writing about health and wellness and HR issues surrounding the transportation industry. Follow her on Twitter: @SoniaStraface. All posts by Sonia Straface