Railway Emergency Work

In mid-March 2019, historic and devastating floodwaters roared along the Missouri and Platte Rivers. Melting snow and heavy rains, compounded by frozen ground unable to absorb the runoff, gushed into rivers, lakes and creeks. The floodwaters shot through areas of Nebraska, Iowa and Missouri, leaving behind damage to transportation systems in need of fast repair — including multiple tracks and bridges. Ames mobilized immediately. Working closely with the railway company and other contractors. Ames crews worked 24/7 from mid-March to mid-November on five locations in Nebraska, two locations in Iowa, and one location in Missouri.

Highlights of major work performed in each state:

La Platte, Nebraska
The mainline across the Platte River suffered severe damage from the impact of huge ice jams. Ames Construction:

Mobilized personnel and equipment to the site in 1 day

Built a 3,500-foot causeway to transport a 440-ton crawler crane to the bridge location in the middle of Platte River

Constructed 3 pile-found river bents

Recovered damaged bridge components from the river

• Erected 4 new bridge spans

Repaired damaged rail tracks and had them back in service in just 16 days

Bartlett, Iowa
Embankment had been wiped out under a 2,300-foot stretch of mainline, including a bridge over a leveed creek. Repairs and grading included:

Bartlett Emergency Work at a Glance

Fast mobilization and 35 pieces of yellow iron — dozers, excavators, rollers, and off-road trucks

Hauling and placing rock to fill 50 feet of water depth

Owner-supplied materials from 7 different quarries with travel times up to two hours away

320 subcontracted trucks hauling up to 27,000 tons of rock daily; a total of 400,000 tons of rock by project end

24/7 schedule

Tracks back in service 50 days from project start

Rock Port, Missouri
Mass flooding devastated the Missouri River Valley, damaging railway bridges in Rock Port. Ames crews:

Erected a 190-foot steel temporary access bridge on State Highway 136 in 4 days

Built a shoofly around a compromised bridge to restore service to the track

Dismantled temporary bridge when repairs were complete

With the highest regard for safety, the entire sequence of projects totaled more than 30,000 man-hours without a single lost time injury.