December 9--WITH INSPECTION DONE, CARGO CAN MOVE PAST THE FALLS AGAIN
Triad's project supervisor Tom McCauley, extreme left. Many thanks to our skilled tug pilot and crane operator, Tim, third from right.
FEBRUARY 15, 2010--UPDATE
Boating season at the Willamette Falls Navigation Canal and Locks will begin around May 1, but commercial cargoes may once again pass the falls, by appointment with the Corps of Engineers, effective in late January.
DECEMBER 10: THE REINSTALLATION OF GATE 4 ON DEC. 7 & 8 WRAPS UP A 10-MONTH-LONG HYDRAULIC STEEL STRUCTURES SAFETY INSPECTION IN BITTERLY COLD WEEK AT WILLAMETTE FALLS LOCKS.
November 24 Update: Gate 2 needed few repairs. It was completed and rehung Nov. 18-19. The final gate to be inspected is Gate 4, which was pulled Nov. 23rd and is now on the work barge being stripped of its cladding in preparation for inspection the week after Thanksgiving. YAY for Triad and the Corps--we might have the entire inspection done for Christmas of 2009, setting up a happy New Year for the river communities.
November 2-3 Corps of Engineers employees (white hats) and contractor Triad Mechanicals (above, brown hats) applied a little old fashioned muscle and rope tension as a crane held the left leaf of Gate 1 just inches from its proper position. Gate 1 had required repairs to the quoin timber, pintle bearings and gudgeons. After two days, instead of resting, the Engineers continued testing Gate 1 and worked with Triad to pull Gate 2 .
The two massive leaves of Gate 1 of the Willamette Falls Navigation Canal and Locks had lain on a work barge just south of the West Linn-Oregon City Arch bridge since August 5, undergoing a hydraulic and steel structures inspection. The first gate encountered by boaters on the lower end of the canal, Gate 1 tipped the scales at approx. 66,000 lbs. per leaf and is over 24 feet in height.
Gates 5, 6, and 7, on the upstream end of the canal, all smalled than Gate 1, were reinstalled in June, after completion of the inspection and minor repairs. Triad Mechanicals' staff, sub contractors and Corps of Engineers employees worked side by side, making the tiny adjustments needed to ease the massive gate leaves into their proper positions in the canal walls. Each gate leaf was brought slowly downstream from the repair site, dangling from a barge-mounted crane. After Gate 5, next to the Lock Museum, was rehung, the barge-mounted crane and the work barge were brought downstream to begin work on the lower gates.
Lock supporters had been jubilant to learn April 28 that funding was allocated from the Corps' stimulus package to complete the inspection and repairs of the remaining six pairs of gates. Inspection of Gate 3 of Willamette Falls Lock and Navigation Canal got under way the week of January 26 and was completed in early March and the gate leaves rehung before the contract ran dry. Engineers supervised test operations on that first gate March 11. (See Gate 7, the uppermost gate, below, whose leaves only weighed in at about 44,000 lbs. each.)