Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Another day on the bridge project

Once the wall had been poured as high as ground level, the men had to pass the buckets of cement and the stones up to workers standing on scaffolding, to pour the next level.

One end of the new wall runs under the existing bridge. The increasing height of the new wall under the old bridge is making for some tight working conditions. You can just see the planks of the existing bridge along the right edge of this picture.

Now lookie here! Allen and the local government each purchased a brand new cement mixer to use on this project! We're pretty hi-tech now!

I asked Russell for some details: it seems that it takes a crew of about twenty men to keep one mixer going all day. Some of these men (usually local volunteers) bring buckets of sand and gravel from the stockpiles over to the mixers. Certain workers are assigned to pour the raw materials into the mixers, keeping track to make sure the correct proportion of each kind of material is maintained. Some of the most knowledgeable of the crew (normally Allen, Russell, Gus, or certain ones of our regular paid crew) run the machines. Next to each mixer is a large pan, into which the mixed concrete is poured. More workers (again, this work is generally done by the volunteers) shovel the mixture into buckets and carry these buckets to the men on the scaffold, who are also members of our paid crew. Our guys on top of the scaffold put the concrete and rocks into the wall panels.

Another level of the wall completed!


Anonymous said...

I'm giggling at the "we're practically high tech now" line. :) As usual, I am completely amazed at the bridges Alan & Co. produces from such basic tools and supplies.

The new mixers are AWESOME! Does the local government cost-share on the bridge projects very often?


Beth said...

Trish I was so glad to see the new mixers!! I've been thinking those poor guys were still mixing all that concrete by hand! Those machines are just BE-U-TI-FUL!!!