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Four-day delivery aids CN’s urgent washout replacement

October 16, 2013

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Sault Ste. Marie, ON, experienced 86 mm (3.4") of heavy rainfall in a four-hour period on Monday night, September 9, 2013. By the time the extreme weather event was over on Tuesday, the rainfall total had reached 140 mm (5.5") and caused significant damage in the region, including this railway stream crossing on the Algoma Central line.

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Fast action relieves suspenseful situation

The complete washout of an aging single culvert had left the rail line suspended some 22 m (72') above the raging Root River. An urgent solution was needed. AIL received the go-ahead on Thursday and had all 24 lengths of Corrugated Steel Pipe onsite by Monday. CN Rail teams worked around the clock to get the job done within just four days.

Precise project coordination was key

By working closely with the site foreman and our production team we were able to give accurate delivery times so that CN could schedule their crews accordingly. Everything clicked along like clockwork and kind words of appreciation were received from CN’s Senior Manager of Bridges and Structure, Steve Del Vechio:

“Thank you very much for your quick response in providing us the pipe we needed for our emergency at Sault Ste. Marie. The AIL team worked very hard with our team to meet our deadlines. The project was completed within our planned time frame. It is much appreciated.”

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The new crossing features five pipes with a total opening area of 37 m2 (398 ft2) delivering a much-improved flow capacity over the original single pipe. Additionally, the engineered backfill of the new installation is more erosion-resistant than the original.

* Photo provided by Cindy Wright, SooToday.com

Project-at-a-glance

Location: Sault Ste. Marie, ON 
Owner/Consultant/Contractor: CN Rail
Product: Corrugated Steel Pipe (Galvanized)
Application: Stream Crossing, Emergency Rail Bridge Replacement
Diameters: Three Pipes 3600 mm, Two Pipes at 2000 mm, Lengths:  61 m each
Installation Time: Four days