Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mega-loads Take a Siesta, Will Roll Again Wednesday Night

Posted By on Wed, Feb 2, 2011 at 3:26 PM

Orofino-Travel across the scenic U.S. Highway 12 in north central Idaho this week and you'll spot historical landmarks, the occasional picnic table and oh yeah, this thing:

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The first of four ConocoPhillips mega-loads is parked near milepost 38.7, just outside of Orofino. It completed the first leg of a four-day journey across Idaho early Wednesday morning. Crews from Emmert International, contracted by Conoco to move the loads, are resting at a nearby motel before they begin another midnight shift to move the rig a bit further across U.S. 12. The second leg is expected to end just outside of Kooskia. By week's end, the load should hit the Idaho-Montana border. Another mega-load is slated to roll next Monday.

From the small towns of Orofino to Pierce to Kooskia, the question was the same this morning: "Did you see it?"

Even the mega-loads' top opponents, Linwood Laughy and his wife Borg Hendrickson, told Citydesk that they hadn't seen the loads yet. But they're about to. The convoy should be rolling in front of their home on the banks of the Clearwater River right about 4 a.m. Thursday.

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  • Borg Hendrickson and her husband Linwood Laughy look out on U.S. 12 and the Clearwater River

Citydesk asked Laughy about what he and his wife had risked during their high-profile attempt to stop the mega-loads.

"We certainly lost a precious summer to spend time with our grandchildren," said Laughy. "Turning U.S. 12 into an industrial transport corridor will likely cost us $200,000 to $300,000 of our property value. It's costing us faith in our government. These are high prices to pay for a couple nearing their 70s who have been hardworking citizens and community contributors all of our lives."

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