Aggregates Manager

February 2014

Aggregates Manager Digital Magazine

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PLANT PROFILE CalPortland's Santosh Aggregate Plant in Scappoose, Ore., has managed to stay busy throughout the economic slowdown of the past few years. cubic miles per hour, and that it traveled at a speed of up to 80 miles per hour. The flood would pick up sediment, loess, and basalt found in Montana and Idaho and deposit them along the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon and Washington and throughout the surrounding valleys as it rushed toward the ocean. The operation "This facility has been around since the 1960s," says Gene Northway, plant manager. The operation originally used a clamshell dredge to mine the area, but it wasn't very successful. Other types of mining techniques were also tried — yarders, sourman buckets, and long-hoe excavators — but none were very successful, so the decision was made to use a dragline. "In the '90s, we purchased a used Marion dragline with a 16-yard bucket," Northway says. "By dragline standards, it's kind of midsized. It makes the small ones look tiny and the big ones look huge. The dragline allowed us to complete a lot of the mining out there that we hadn't been able to do before." A big part of the machine's time is spent doing preparation work. The dragline excavates the overburden, most of which is underwater, down to gravel. Then it excavates the gravel and places it where the overburden came out to create a bench area so that the dragline can move to that spot to dig. The rest of the machine's time is spent digging production rock. The dragline has a hoist cable and a drag cable. The operator swings the bucket out with the teeth of the bucket facing downward and drops it into the water. Once it hits the bottom, the operator pulls on the bucket to fill it up. When the bucket is full, the operator pulls it in until it is fairly close AGGREGATES MANAGER February 2014 29

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