Lafarge, PACCAR working on $15 billion storm surge protection system with Corps of Engineers
“The full-service leasing option makes good operational sense. I deal with Kenworth of South Louisiana’s local PacLease operation, so I have a local contact that can help me get any maintenance issues resolved. Dave Russo and the folks at Kenworth of South Louisiana-PacLease take care of us.”
The move to full-service leasing was made easy by Marchand’s experience with Kenworth of South Louisiana-PacLease, which provides contract maintenance for many of the trucks in Lafarge’s Louisiana operation. The operation’s fleet of 120 trucks includes heavy-duty trucks with dump bodies, concrete ready-mix trucks with 10-yard drums, and tractors to pull a variety of support trailers.
Marchand particularly likes the ability and willingness of Kenworth of South Louisiana-PacLease to provide mobile maintenance service when the company is running trucks around the clock.
In 2010, as part of the work on the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal Lock Replacement Project, Lafarge took part in a 58-hour monolithic placement of 10,242 cubic yards of Agilia concrete. This placement of Agilia concrete still holds the world’s record for the largest monolithic (or continuously placed) underwater concrete pour.
Agilia, which is Lafarge’s proprietary high-performance, self-consolidating, self-leveling concrete mix, gave Lafarge North America an edge when bidding this special product, according to Lafarge product specialist Gerard Vitrano. The Agilia product, which requires superior mixing efficiencies, benefited from the power delivered by the Kenworth trucks, he added.
“With the complexity of our Agilia mix, we must have trucks that can handle the strict mixing demands,” Vitrano said.
Brad Trueting, area manager for Lafarge North America who served as project manager for the underwater pour, believes that the project’s success was enhanced by the reliability of the Kenworth Trucks and the support of full-service leasing from PacLease.
“When faced with the reality of having to place concrete for 58 hours straight, you must have your truck fleet as dependable as your hard-working labor force,” Treuting said. “And by leasing the Kenworth trucks from PacLease, we’re getting maximum return on the asset. Kenworth of South Louisiana-PacLease provides us remote servicing when the trucks need to be serviced. PacLease takes on the risk of residual value at the end of the lease. So, we’re not having to deal with any unforeseen costs through the life of the lease. And with even monthly payments, it’s easier to budget the use of the trucks on these different projects.”
Lafarge’s Louisiana operation recently delivered the remaining yardage of high-performance concrete to pour the final bridge pilings and the eastbound approach ramps for the new U.S. Interstate 10 Twin Span Bridge. This 5.4-mile long bridge over Lake Pontchartrain has 55,000 daily commuters. Hurricane Katrina severely damaged the original twin span in 2005. Temporary fixes immediately following the disaster restored traffic on the old twin span. Meanwhile construction of the new six-lane twin span bridge, which started in 2006, took five years to complete and cost more than $800 million. Lafarge poured all of the concrete used in its construction.
“When we’re involved in those kind of placements, we have a lot of equipment out there, plus dedicated concrete batch plants operating and mixers pouring concrete continuously,” Marchand said. “In order to complete them, we have to have trucks that we can depend on to perform. But just as importantly, we need a local dealer that we can rely on to help us choose the right specs for those trucks and keep them rolling. We get all that with Kenworth trucks, Kenworth of South Louisiana, and PacLease through their contract maintenance and full-service lease products.”
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