Heavy Hauling - San Francisco, CA | Sheedy Crane

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February 18, 2021by Sheedy Crane0

“Oversized Load.” When you see that sign on the back of a truck traveling in front of you on a two-lane road, you know that you’ve got a long drive ahead of you. But as stressful as that situation might be, it’s nothing compared to the stress of heavy equipment transport–otherwise known as heavy hauling in the Bay Area.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of the things you can do to ensure safe transit when you need to move heavy machinery, and how our transportation and engineering service in the Bay Area can help.

1 – Plan ahead with a route survey

It’s important to know the route your equipment will need to take before you leave. A route survey can help you identify places where you’ll need to take a detour, as well as potential hazards: construction, tolls and heavy traffic.

A route survey can also look for things like low bridges and underpasses, turning radiuses, hanging electrical wires and railroad crossings.

2 – Fees and permits

Before you begin your journey, make sure you have all your state, local and federal permits in place and know what regulations you might need to follow when moving large objects.

If you’ll be crossing state lines, you and your team should know each state’s rules for oversized loads. And regardless of which state you’re in, remember that commercial vehicles transporting more than 10,000 pounds must comply with federal regulations.

You may also have to pay accessorial charges for things like shrink wrap, layovers, tolls and — if the trip is long enough — the cost of lodging.

3 – Visual safety

When one needs to transport heavy equipment an oversized load, one can put other motorists at risk, which is why your drivers should follow proper procedures and carry special markings to let other drivers know to be careful.

Each state has different requirements for these markings, but in general, it’s a good idea to have with you 12-18 inch orange or red warning flags to use during the day, red lights or flashing amber lights for nighttime travel and a giant yellow reflective banner that other drivers can see.

4 – Inspect your truck

Before heading out, inspect your trailer to make sure it’s ready for the road. Look for damage to the chains, straps and binders used to tie down machinery, and check the hydraulic hoses for signs of chafing.

Make sure the brakes are in good working order and the wheels have adequate tire pressure, and inspect the trailer itself to ensure that it’s level.

Bay Area Heavy Hauling

Are you feeling uncertain about heavy equipment transport in the Bay Area? Turn to Sheedy Crane. Our Bay Area Heavy Hauling services are backed by a staff of engineers, project managers and riggers who are experts in heavy lifting and overweight/over-dimensional load transport.

Our engineering services include:

  • Engineered critical lift planning
  • Heavy Hauling and over-dimensional cargo tie-down and planning
  • Custom 2D and 3D CAD support
  • Conceptual drawings and designs
  • Professional engineer stamped calculations and drawings
  • Temporary support structure planning and designs
  • Site organization, supervision, and technical assistance
  • Load testing
  • Feasibility studies
  • Route surveys
  • Budget estimates

Contact us today to learn more about how Sheedy’s Bay Area engineering services can help you with your next project.


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April 23, 2019by Sheedy Crane0

Before any of our operators set foot on a work-site, our engineers have evaluated every aspect of a proposed project. With safety in mind, we plan for all possible scenarios based on the load, route, and projected lift. Our civil and building engineers use 2D and 3D CAD designs to predict exactly how a heavy hauling/lifting operation will function in the real world. This enhances the predictability, precision, and productivity of everyone involved in the project. Our engineering services in the San Francisco Bay Area help facilitate heavy lifts, heavy hauling, structural shoring, seismic retrofitting, and hoist services around the Western United States. Read on for considerations for heavy hauling projects.

Heavy Hauling Engineering

Our team of experienced operators and engineers are responsible for some very impressive feats of modern technology, physics, and engineering. For example, a dual-lane heavy haul of a refinery pressure vessel for the Diablo Canyon Power Plant required careful logistical and safety planning. Hundreds of thousands of pounds had to be moved countless miles through the roads of California; this entailed careful route planning and proper engineering precautions. Many aspects of a project need to be taken into account whenever planning for a heavy haul, such as:

  • The weight limit of the roads on a proposed route
  • The weight of the refinery pressure vessel
  • The weight limit of all heavy hauling equipment, including trailers, trucks, cranes, and the equipment used to secure the item to the bed of the trailer
  • Maximum MPH of the transporting vehicle
  • Safe securing of the load and proper weight testing
  • Possible construction of temporary structures to facilitate the transport of the item
  • Heavy and over-dimensional cargo tie-down and planning
  • Engineered critical lift planning

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Our Heavy Hauling work at Diablo Canyon

This project helped facilitate upgrades to the Diablo Canyon Power Plant, a facility that is responsible for 8.6% of total California power generation and 23% of the state’s carbon-free generation. This power plant supplies the electrical needs to more than 3 million people; with a job this large, errors in safety planning and engineering calculations are simply not an option.

Other Considerations for Heavy Haul Engineers

When engineering a safe route for a heavy haul, engineers don’t just take the weight limit of certain roads into account; engineers also must plan for any obstructions on the proposed route. Here are just a few obstructions that we’ve encountered on routine route planning:

  • Bridges: Measuring bridges and obtaining weight limits is incredibly important. Some states do not have the height limits recorded for certain bridges, so it may be necessary to have an engineer measure the dimensions of any and all bridges before the route is approved.
  • Trees: If a tree is obstructing a proposed route, permission is required to have a tree trimmed or cut down. Older trees may be protected by state laws; if this is the case, the tree may have to be tied down, or another route must be planned.
  • Wires: If utility or electrical wires are obstructing a route, a utility or electrical company must be contracted to help temporarily move the wires. Other considerations, such as traffic safety and control, must be taken into account. This generally requires working with local police to ensure the safety of all bystanders and operators.
  • Railroad Crossings: If a load is particularly heavy, a truck may not be moving more than 5-10 MPH at any given time (or even slower). Owners of the railroad must be contacted to ensure a proper amount of leeway when crossing certain tracks.
  • Signal Lights and Signs: If traffic lights or overhanging signs are blocking the proposed route, light contractors, state entities, and other service professionals will need to assist with the heavy haul.

Clearance laws are different for every state and generally come in either 2in or 6in clearance variants. This just means that there needs to be at least two inches or six inches between the top of the load and the highest point on the bridge. Other federal regulations for weight limits on federal highways and interstates and service roads must also be honored, and permits must be obtained if load limits exceed the usual weight capacity.

Heavy Hauling San Francisco

Sheedy Crane is a leader in cranes, rigging, hoists, and heavy hauling; we employ a large staff of in-house engineers to ensure the proper planning, safety, and execution of each and every heavy lift and heavy haul. Our professional engineers use the latest modeling and design 2D and 3D CAD software to create conceptual drawings, designs, and calculations. Our engineers offer route surveys, feasibility studies, load testing, engineered critical lift planning, budget estimates, and more! Visit our contact page to get in touch with a Sheedy engineer today!