Huber Engineered Woods Traffic Improvement Project
Huber Engineered Woods (HEW) produces high performance building products for residential and commercial projects nationwide. Their headquarters are in North Carolina, but they have a local facility in Easton, Maine.
HEW was faced with a systemic safety/traffic flow issue. The HEW Traffic Improvement Project was driven by improving plant safety through reducing pedestrian/mobile equipment interactions. In 2018, HEW conducted a traffic study to identify the highest risk areas for these interactions. The heavy log and flatbed truck traffic traveling across the main employee walkway to the facility was identified and targeted with a $1M capital project. The main goals were to eliminate log and flatbed traffic from the employee walkway, improve traffic flow by separating small and large vehicles, and improve the safety and efficiency at the scale house.
During the spring and summer of 2019, the team at HEW reviewed multiple different locations for the new scale house, keeping the three main goals at the forefront. Haley Ward was hired to analyze the traffic safety improvement of several possible options and to design the final layout. Our team at Haley Ward reviewed their traffic patterns and looked at alternative options. It was determined that the best course of action was to move the scale house to a different location, therefore no longer routing trucks by the employee parking lot, or the residential areas. We also redesigned the scale house in a way that no longer required drivers to get out of their trucks, rather they could drive up, get their paperwork, and be on their way in less than half the time. Haley Ward also designed a traffic flow pattern within the mill site which eliminated the truck queue on the local residential road.
Breaking ground in fall of 2019, the project progressed safely during the frigid Maine winter and opened in March 2020. The new scale house location greatly improves traffic flow by creating a separate visitor/delivery entrance, allowing log trucks to remain in the log yard during their entire visit, and streamlining outbound oriented strand board (OSB) flatbed traffic. The project also installed an above ground 12’x80’ scale deck with 150,000-pound capacity, high-definition traffic cameras with 360o coverage, backup generator for uninterrupted scaling and shipping, ergonomic sit-stand workstation, and the “bank teller” transaction drawer for conducting required paperwork transactions while keeping drivers in their trucks, increasing safety and efficiency for drivers and Huber employees.
“We originally hired Haley Ward to help with preliminary layouts for this project, fully intending to manage it ourselves. Once Dave showed us the quality of their work, attention to detail and sense of urgency, we kept them on for the whole project. Without question, it was the right decision. This was a large capital investment chosen for its significant impacts on employee, contractor, and visitor safety so we had to get it right. Haley Ward brought a level of civil design and quality assurance experience we simply didn’t have. Every variable was accounted for, and the project finished on budget, ahead of schedule and met all our goals. I wouldn’t hesitate to use them again.” Jeremy York, Maintenance Superintendent/Capital Projects Manager
“I think this new scale house is awesome for many reasons; mostly because it is much safer for our truck drivers. Prior to the new scale house, they had to exit their trucks and walk back and forth from old scale house four times per load. This new design eliminates the risk of slips, trips, and falls. It also stays much cleaner, it is much more efficient, and eliminates distractions from outside visitors so I can concentrate on log trucks and flatbeds. Finally, opening in March 2020, it came just in time for the COVID-19 pandemic.” Dave Robertson, Scale House Attendant
“Our loggers really enjoy Easton’s high-quality service and quick turn times in the log yard. The new scale house is state-of-the-art with the one-of-a-kind transaction drawer. They all love not having to get out of their trucks.” Carter Voisine, Procurement Forester
“This project not only showcases the Huber family’s continued commitment to world class safety for our employees and contractors, but also the innovative spirit that sets Huber Engineered Woods apart from the rest of the industry.” Spencer Perry, Project Manager