For the heavy haulage driver Frieder, extreme challenges are part of the programme.
Frieder and his MAN TGX 41.680 8×4 4 BBS. Two that rise to extreme challenges. For example: to get the MS Utting over land and back into the water.
253.8 tons and 68 metres are typical weights and measures that heavy haulage driver Frieder has to deal with in his job. In the specific example of this story, Frieder brought the pleasure boat MS Utting to Lake Ammersee in Bavaria in early 2017 as part of his job for the freight forwarder Kübler from Schwäbisch Hall. The most important part of the journey across land the low loader trailer and driver had to cover was from the Middle Franconian heavy-goods port at Roth to Autobahn A 96 at Lindau.
When asked about the extraordinary challenge posed by this job, Frieder dismisses it with a smile. This is how you respond when you can draw on your skills and 30 years of professional experience. And a solid team which professionally plans and implements such special and heavy goods haulage jobs. For Kübler, jobs such as transporting the MS Utting are all part of a day’s work. In the past, the company once transported the Soviet space shuttle Buran and the French Concorde aircraft. This can only happen with a well-functioning team and an experienced driver who, in addition to an HGV category licence and nerves of steel, also possesses the requisite technical expertise. Theoretical knowledge can be garnered from regular training. The rest is practice: especially foresight, intuition and the correct assessment of the feasibility of the transport job. In advance of the MS Utting job, Frieder put in many kilometres in the car. This helped to inspire appropriate solutions for possible obstructions.
From Nuremberg to Munich
At first that sounds less like a challenge and instead requires experience. “Truth be told, for the Etterschlag tunnel and the Inning Autobahn exit, we had to come up with some ideas”, recounts Frieder. “Special and heavy goods haulage jobs mean precision work. The tunnel was too narrow to pass through. We were able to gain 30 centimetres by taking off the escape route signs from the sides. Since the lorry and the ship’s hull were too long at 68 metres, at the Inning exit, we unceremoniously trespassed onto the Autobahn entrance. All under the watchful eye of the law. In addition to a mobile assistance team for the road, the Kübler convoy was accompanied the whole time by the police”.
Theory and practice
“We select the route and submit an application to the traffic authority concerned”, explains Frieder of the process. “Obviously, no mistakes are allowed on such a haulage job, except from acts of God. We are not protected against bad weather, accidents or parking offenders. What is important, however, is that you stay calm and keep a cool head in such unexpected situations”. And keep an eye on the prize: “Before the tour, I imagined to myself how MS Utting would enter service on Lake Ammersee, and that hopefully many people would be able to enjoy sailing aboard her”.
Are you somebody like Frieder?
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