Mexico-based heavy haul company Pesado used a Goldhofer 12 axle THP/SL heavy-duty combination to transport a 180 tonne electric locomotive 2,250 kilometres from San Luis Potosi to Valladolid, Yucatan in Mexico.

The 12-axle THP/SL heavy-duty combination on Mexico’s highways. (Photo: Goldhofer)

The EMD GP-38-2 electric locomotive is 18 metres long and 4.7 metres high and will operate on the new Tren Maya railway.

The railway is part of a major infrastructure project involving the construction of a 1,500 kilometre railway line linking Mexico’s tourism destinations and Maya sites.

For the operation, Pesado chose the Goldhofer combination with a drop deck designed for a payload of up to 300 tonnes.

The drop deck was necessary because of the locomotive’s 4.7 metre overall height.

Thanks to the drop deck, it was possible to reach Valladolid, 2,250 km away, on direct route, mainly using federal highways.

Departure test

The departure from the loading yard was the first test of the Pesado team’s capabilities with the 69 meter long combination. Power came from two 515 hp Western Star 6900XD 8x6 heavy-duty tractors, sometimes used in the push-pull mode.

The Pesado team faced its first challenge at the exit of the loading yard. (Photo: Goldhofer)

With a 55° steering angle and +/-300 mm hydraulic axle stroke, no serious problems were caused by the tight spots on the route including roundabouts and junctions.

The 304 tonne rig, with an overall width of 3.3 metres and a total height of 5.06 metres, reached its destination in Valladolid, Yucatan in 14 days.

Travel challenges

“It was a challenging journey through tourist areas with narrow roads and tight radii, but the precision steering available with Goldhofer’s THP/SL modules makes safe and accurate manoeuvring possible even under such conditions,” said Ramiro Muñoz Martinez, specialized transportation engineer at Pesado.

The 69 metre long combination could manage tight bends along the route. (Photo: Goldhofer)
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