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Wind turbine parts arrive in Island Pond

BRIGHTON – The wind turbine parts destined for Green Mountain Power’s (GMP) wind turbine project on the Lowell Mountains are arriving in Island Pond’s train yard. The parts will wait at a staging area at a nearby lumber yard.
Joel Cope, the administrative assistant in Brighton, said there were concerns but the town has worked closely with GMP, the state, and the trucking companies to ensure any issues are addressed.
One remaining concern is existing truck traffic on Back Street, the road the trucks will take from the lumber yard before turning onto RT 105. Cope says he is confident the issue will be addressed.
“It’s going to be quite an event,” he said in an interview Monday.
GMP has assured surrounding towns that everything is in order and that roads and bridges can handle the oversized loads, including the temporary bridge on Route 105 between Brighton and Charleston. The bridge was damaged following severe storms last spring. A temporary bridge was installed and a new one is supposed to be built next year.
Dale Perron with the District 9 Agency of Transportation said the bridge can handle the legal weight limit. Even though some of the trucks are triple the legal weight limit, they have more axels, which spread out the weight. Road surveys will take place before and after the trucking is complete to access any damage or concerns.
Many towns involved expressed concerns on the oversized loads, emergency vehicle impediments, and interference with school busses when school begins late summer. GMP promises to work out a schedule to accommodate these concerns.
A total of 126 oversized and over-weight trucks are expected to roll through on Route 105 from Brighton, to Charleston, and then Derby, where they will enter Interstate 91 South and exit in Orleans, travel to Irasburg and then to Lowell, driving slower than the speed limit.
The trucks range in size, but the longest are about 203 feet, which will carry turbine blades. The heaviest trucks will carry the turbine bases, have a weight of approximately 267,000 pounds and are 180 feet long.
Up to six trucks a day are permitted Monday through Thursday from 8 A.M. to 11 A.M., and then from 1 P.M. until 4 P.M, and Friday between 8 A.M. and 11 A.M. with no trucking on weekends or holidays. Trucks will roll mid-July through early September.