Overpass Cleaning18 September 2023
An emergency on Highway 1 caused a dump tuck with a heavily filled box and trailer to slam into the abutment wall of overpass 104 in East Abbotsford. The truck went up in flames, shooting heavy soot from fuel, tires, and motor components up into the underside of the bridge. The beams on the underside were black, as well as the abutments. No injuries were sustained, except to the bridge.
Such a mess is not tolerable to BC Highways, and nor is a blackened structure, because engineers need to inspect the structure thoroughly for damage. We got a call and were asked to quote on this extensive and complex cleaning job.
We got the contract. They revealed to us, (I paraphrase) – we could not find another exterior cleaning company in Greater Vancouver with the credentials, the insurance, the breadth of services, the safety record and the longevity of ROTban Ultra Cleaning Services Corp
The highway would have to be closed at night to allow our work to be done. The cost of traffic control alone was more than $7,000 for 4.5 hours, for each of 3 nights. That cost was borne by BC Highways. There was no power and no light at the site. There was no water available. Those challenges and costs were borne by ROTban Corp. within the contract.
In the end, because of water restrictions, we had to load up 3,000 litres of water from a site in Chilliwack 20 minutes away and fill 2 stationary tanks onsite for the cleaning equipment to draw water from. At times, the drive back from the fill site took an hour, due to the traffic jam that the related freeway closure caused.
Even in those conditions, we provided enough water to the cleaners to keep 2 technicians cleaning full time over each 5 hour shift without running out of the water supply. The water hauling had to start before the highway was closed to achieve this.
We provided our own power source, sump pumps to draw water, and a transfer pump to move water from the truck into our temporary stationary tanks. We provided floodlights to turn night into day, and an articulating boom lift so our technicians could get into just the right positions throughout the project. We provided relentless energetic work, without a break to clean, move, clean, move clean!
Working for the highways requires compliance with many safety rules as well. It is odd to be on a freeway that is clear of all traffic on the westward lane, while seeing and hearing significant traffic moving at 100 k a few meters away!
But at its core, this was simply a cleaning job. The cleaning skills, experience and problem-solving abilities of ROTban Ultra Cleaning Corp met all the criteria, and the job was completed in three nights. Huge thanks go out to our main cleaning team, Michel Daoust and Ian Chance, with the support of Jordan Martyn and Blair Curtis for the trucking and equipment repair.
ROTban Ultra Cleaning Corp provides off grid exterior cleaning services for all kinds of structural cleaning, be it road signage, curbs and direction signs, overpasses, logging camp buildings or vehicles. If you have any of the needs seen in this overpass example, we are here for you.