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#PASuperload22 Makes its Way Across Pennsylvania

March 04, 2022 05:00 PM
By: Suzy Atkins

​Did you spot the superload? The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) along with the Pennsylvania State Police and the United States Department of Transportation coordinated a superload being transported from West Milton, New York to Wampum, Pennsylvania. Traveling more than 400-miles across the state.  

The superload was 213 feet long and weighed 294 tons. For scale, an adult blue whale weighs about 150 tons and can span between 70 and 110 feet long. So basically, the driver is towing the equivalent of two blue whales or seventy-three Hummer H1s according to Kristen Shaw of The Drive. 

This shipment consisted of an empty steel tank that was removed as a part of the decommissioning of the D1G Prototype reactor at the Kenneth A. Kesselring Site in West Milton, New York. The D1G Prototype was used to train U.S. Navy Sailors on the safe operation of the nuclear propulsion systems on the U.S. Navy's nuclear-powered fleet and was shut down in 1996. Upon arrival in Wampum, the tank will be disassembled and recycled/disposed.   

The superload travel plan involved 16 counties and featured ramp maneuvers, unusual traffic patterns, and slow-moving vehicles. The superload moved as a rolling slowdown using two traffic lanes which resulted in traffic stoppages and travel delays. The majority of the transport took place during nighttime hours.  

As luck would have it, mother nature made an appearance. Winter storm Izzy blanketed the entire state. Rain, sleet, snow and ice caused delays. While the trailer was parked for two nights due to the storm, there was only a one-day delay in reaching its resting place. 

It was a monumental task to coordinate across two states and several governmental agencies. Kudos to everyone involved in this long journey! 

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