Couny engineer to purchase new trailer for emergency equipment

Published 11:00 am Wednesday, February 7, 2024

With all the recent temperamental weather, it’s important to have the most efficient equipment readily available to the county highway department. 

Highway Engineer Josh Harvill requested to purchase one 2024 Econoline 20-ton, heavy-duty, dual-tandem tilt trailer during the Chambers County Commission meeting. The 20-foot-long trailer will haul smaller equipment for the highway department.

Harvill’s estimated cost for the trailer is $32,415. He said that the cost was included in the department’s yearly budget. 

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Though they have 50-foot-long trailers that work for the larger equipment, Harvill said they can be a liability during an emergency, in the dark at night, if his crew needs to turn the trailer around or maneuver it onto the shoulder of the road. 

The 20-foot trailer will make for a more efficient method for transporting small equipment to emergency zones. Harvill said it was also time to replace the older trailer the department currently uses for these loads. 

The purchase will be made from Thompson Tractor through the Omnia Partners Cooperative Purchasing Contract. The Alabama Department of Examiners of Public Accounts approved the competitive bidding process used by Omnia Partners, which is a national purchasing cooperative, for certain projects. 

Omnia Partners, which has been in business for 22 years, works with over 600,000 members worldwide. Some of the industries that the organization partners with include K-12 Education, higher education, government, nonprofit, enterprise, corporate, private equity and real estate.

Based on that review, the competitive bid process used by Omnia is approved for use through Dec. 31. The approval means that Alabama counties and municipalities are authorized to purchase materials or equipment that are part of another contract for “public works.”