Number 10 [in Lewiston Tribune Newsroom Staff Poll]: Megaloads Roll in Spite of Foes

Megaloads took to U.S. highways 12 and 95 in 2011, despite legal battles seeking to slow or stop the transports.

The first of the oversized loads that take up two lanes of traffic left the Port of Lewiston on U.S. 12 in the winter carrying half a drum for an upgrade of a ConocoPhillips refinery in Billings, Montana.

Imperial Oil hauled components for a processing plant in the Kearl Oil Sands in Alberta, Canada, on U.S. 95. Weyerhaeuser sent pieces of equipment on U.S. 12 for a project at a Canadian factory. Selway Corp. in Montana hauled a huge pipe on U.S. 12 for a hydroelectric project in Washington.

Legal wrangling continues even as megaloads on north central Idaho highways become more common. A case is pending in Montana where a judge is expected to decide this month if Imperial Oil can construct road turnouts and other improvements in that state for megaloads on two-lane highways.

Imperial Oil would prefer to take U.S. 12 in Idaho and the highway route involved in the Montana litigation since it avoids interstates, allowing for taller shipments.

(The Lewiston Tribune)

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