Several loggers in Virginia’s piedmont region (and some loggers in North and South Carolina) own rotating “street sweeper” brushes that have proven effective in cleaning road surfaces to ensure highway safety, in maintaining a positive image with area residents, and as means for continuing production during certain wet weather conditions.


Most loggers with sweepers use a rear-mounted, mechanically driven sweeper attachment that mounts easily on tractors with three-point hitches. The sweepers can vary in size; a common tractor-mounted street sweeper unit manufactured by Old Dominion Brush Company of Richmond, Virginia (; 800-446-9823) is approximately 32 inches in diameter and comes in lengths of 6 or 7 feet. The sweeper is capable of angling 30 degrees left or right, using the hydraulic arms that attach to the three-point hitch. The sweeper bristles are combinations of polypropylene and steel wire.

Fig. 2 Trailer-mounted brushes fit on many small tractors.

A small number of loggers use a self-propelled, rubber-tired street sweeper machine. The self-propelled units, sold by Terramite Construction Equipment (based in Cross Lanes, West Virginia; 304-776-4231; can sweep at an angle of up to 40 degrees each, and the broom heads come in sizes of 6 feet or 8 feet.


When a loaded log or chip truck enters a public highway and carries mud or stone out with it, a crew member follows the truck with a small farm tractor or the self-propelled unit that sweeps the highway with the rotating brush attachment. Since big, heavy clumps of dirt can clog the broom bristles, some loggers say they also use the front-end bucket on their tractor for scraping any exceptionally thick clumps that happen to drop out on the road. However, another logger deals with them by making two passes: once with the brush not quite all the way down, and then again with the brush all the way down. In addition, some loggers recommend using a flagger to control traffic on certain roads, since the tractor or self-propelled unit moves more slowly than vehicle traffic does. (All tractors should display the orange “slow-moving vehicle” triangle; lights are an added safety measure.)


Even on logging roads that are covered with rock, some transfer of mud to public roads is possible. Besides the safety benefit of sweeping the roads clean, several loggers commented that residents near a harvested tract notice and appreciate the care that the harvesting operation takes to keep the road clean when hauling from a wet woods road. The loggers also commented that some of the local highway departments co-exist more peacefully with them when they see they have a street sweeping unit. The sweeping attachments have reduced wet-weather downtime and saved road-cleaning manual labor costs. The loggers using these sweeping units say they are definitely worth the investment.


Several loggers report that sweeping attachments of various brands were available from their local tractor dealership. (For example, Tapscott Bros. Logging of Scottsville, Virginia purchased a “Sweepster rotar

Fig. 3: roatating brush sweeps dirts off the roadway.

y broom” from Greenline Service Corp., a John Deere dealer located in Fredericksburg, Virginia. A late-2012 listing on advertised a used Sweepster broom for $2,850.) A late-2012 price quote from Old Dominion Brush Co. (order direct) for its model RMB500 street sweeper (which mounts to a tractor’s three-point hitch and includes a hood deflector) was $4,400 new for a 6-foot brush, and $150 extra for the 7-foot brush (not including shipping).

Some loggers were able to purchase the self-propelled, rubber- tired units sold by Terramite in a used condition for under $10,000. A recent Terramite web site check of prices for new self-propelled units listed a price of $23,600 for the TSS 46

Fig. 4 Self-propelled unit manufactured by Terramite Construction Equipment

model (with 6-foot broom head) and $23,750 for the TSS 48 model (with 8-foot broom head). Some equipment rental stores have the Terramite machine for rent, so the logger would not have to bear the cost year-round. In late 2012, Sunbelt Rentals rented the 6-foot street broom for $255/day, $785/week, or $2,145/four weeks.

The Terramite machines include a flipping hitch arm for towing the unit behind a pickup truck. They also include 100-gallon tanks that can be filled with water and sprayed on a road to keep the dust down.




Jay Phaup, Grief Packing, LLC, Amherst, VA,

Jim Kuykendall, Glatefelter Pulp Wood Co., Spotsylvania, VA,

Reviewed by: Rick Meyer, Appalachian/Southwide Region Manager

BACKGROUND:   On a clear, dry, summer day in the South, an equipment operator was moving a skidder from one end of an old, abandoned woodyard to another. The terrain was flat, and the skidder operator was following an existing, old road.

PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS: The 55-year-old skidder operator had been employed in the logging business for approximately 35 years, and he was considered fully trained for the job. It is not known whether he was wearing a seatbelt.

UNSAFE CONDITIONS: The old road on the woodyard had not been used for approximately 10 years. The skidder operator failed to inspect the road, and he did not look at the culvert that was underneath one section of the road, so he did not notice that the culvert had rusted. The bands connecting the culvert sections were completely rusted through. Additionally, the soil around the culvert had washed out and left a void under the road.

ACCIDENT: When the skidder moved over the rusted culvert, the soil collapsed, and the front end of the skidder dropped approximately five feet down into hole made by the collapsed section.

INJURY: Fortunately, the skidder operator was not injured, and the machine was not damaged significantly.


• Inspect old culverts and roads prior to use.

• If a section of a road is unsafe and will not be repaired immediately, block it off, close it, and otherwise mark it with barriers, so that no one can be injured. (This road has now been closed, with a fence and barriers placed on each side.)

• Ensure that all equipment operators always wear seat belts when the machine is moving.

Reviewed by:
Southwide Safety Committee;
Rick Meyer Appalachian/Southwide Region Manager
Please follow equipment manufacturers’ recommendations for safe operation and maintenance procedures.

And here it is—2013!

WSRI’s Annual Meeting is set for April 17 at the Hyatt Regency Riverfront in Jacksonville, Florida, the day before FRA’s Annual Meeting begins at the same location. Registration materials and meeting details should be available by the time you read these words.

Following the early morning business meeting, we’ll again have research project presentations, including reports on:

• Factors Affecting Fuel Consumption & Harvesting Cost, with Tom Gallagher, Auburn University. WSRI is cosponsoring this project with the National Council on Air & Stream Improvement (NCASI), and it should create broad interest.

• Supplier Consumer Relations - Don Taylor of Sustainable Resource Systems has made presentations about this project throughout the country and staged a webinar; he’ll present a summary and overview of comments and reactions he’s received.

• Regional Cost Analysis & Indices for Conventional Harvesting Operations – Dale Greene, Shawn Baker, Tom Harris, and Richard Bin Mei, all of the University of Georgia, will give us an update on this important new project.


Don Taylor’s Project on Supplier Consumer Relations created so much interest among suppliers and consumers, as well as among landowners and equipment dealers, that it seemed pressing to seek a follow-up project to measure the overall cost to the industry of austerity measures taken during the recession. The WSRI Technical Team is assessing a proposal made by Don and RISI:

• to make a quantitative assessment of the capital investment in logging and trucking equipment needed to meet roundwood demand over the next several years, and

• to quantify the cost of lost production in the supply chain that can be attributed to breakdowns in business relationships.


This project, if approved, will deliver the following:

1) roundwood production forecast by four U.S. census regions for 2013 through 2017;

2) estimates of current logging capacity and current utilization;

3) a basis for the estimated capital investment required within the procurement sector to meet projected demand;

4) base data on lost production due to avoidable break-downs in business relationships;

5) a listing of factors that will impact future investment of capital from suppliers; and

6) a final report, with conclusions and recommendations from both research partners.

Don Taylor, along with Peter Barynin of RISI, will present an overview of this potentially valuable project at the WSRI Annual meeting. Please plan to attend this one-day meeting to review updates on current WSRI projects, and interact with others who have similar interests. Not a WSRI member yet? Anyone can register— but you might feel better if you were a supporting member of WSRI. Contact me, and I will show you how economical and easy it is to join!

Jim Fendig Executive Director,
WSRI 912-598-8023


Producing biomass energy presents a different set of issues relative to other energy development industries. Biomass resources are widely distributed geographically. When making decisions about the location and scale of biomass processing facilities, the logistics of harvest and collection make the geographic distribution of the resource in relation to the distribution of transportation infrastructure a key determining factor. How much of what is where? Biomass assessments such as the Billion Ton Study, while informative on a national policy level, do not address resource feasibility below the county level. Biomass project developers interested in specific sites require a finer degree of detail to answer the question, “How much of what is where and at what cost?”


Enegis, a Fairfax, Virginia-based consulting firm offering energy and environmental services founded in quantitative GIS analysis, has developed the Biomass Energy Analytical Model (BEAM) to address site-specific project due-diligence for biomass supply. BEAM integrates high-resolution satellite imagery with resource assessments using sophisticated quantitative Geographical Information Systems (GIS) techniques. BEAM has the capacity to quantify and classify available biomass resources based on appropriate land cover classification.


BEAM can evaluate a proposed biomass project area drawing on the following capabilities: • Coverage of the “lower 48” states; • 30-meter resolution land cover data;

• Analysis of 45 species and commodities;

Fig. 1: BEAM’s integration of factors impacting a suite of harvest and logisticsvariables models a processing site’s delivered-biomass cost, as well as delivered-costestimates for two potential bio-energy product customers. 

• Scalability—analysis at site-specific levels or at regional or national levels;

• Integrated assessment of transportation infrastructure;

• Species-specific physical, chemical, harvesting, processing, and perishability parameters;

• Calculation of life-cycle costs, energy, and carbon balance.

Integrated with project-specific economic parameters and transportation infrastructure, BEAM allows for quantitative resource assessment with data-driven calculation of collection, processing, and distribution costs. Fig. 1 shows an example of BEAM output, which models a pellet facility (yellow triangle) that could provide material to a network of coal-fired power plants (red squares).

Central to the BEAM is a Fully-Integrated Geodataset (FIG), including 30-meter-resolution land cover polygons derived from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) interpretation of LandSat Thematic Mapper imagery. Fig. 2 shows this land cover data around Atlanta, Georgia. Transportation infrastructure is integrated in the FIG, allowing BEAM to quantify resources in place, as well as to model their availability, considering species-specific parameters and transportation logistics.

The BEAM comprises three modules: the Biomass Availability Module (BAM), the Biomass Transport and Storage Module (BTSM), and the Biomass Demand Module (BDM). The Biomass Availability Module models available biomass based on the FIG, commodity assessments, and species-specific harvesting parameters. The BAM analyzes over 45 biomass species in three submodules: the Agricultural Resources Submodule, the Woody Residues Submodule, and the Biogas Submodule. It calculates the available biomass able to be collected to a specific point within a given investigation radius.

The Biomass Transport and Storage Module models transport of available biomass to selected, scenario-specific biomass SPs. The BTSM calculates cost, CO2 emissions, and energy balance at sequential stages of transport and processing. T

Fig. 2: Example of BEAM's land cover data, derived from U.S. Geological Survey interpretation of LandSat Thematic Mapper imagery.

he Biomass Demand Module runs various demand scenarios, such that biomass might be cofired at coal-fired power plants or burned in biomass boilers for power generation or in combined heat and power projects.


The BEAM has the capability to calculate costs, CO2 emissions, and energy balance at each of the process flow stages depicted in Fig. 3. The BEAM’s structure and the robust data accessed in the model’s FIG give it critical scalability and analytical flexibility. These qualities have been implemented in site-specific and regional analyses.


Fig. 3:Schematic diagram of BEAM’s process flow in analyzing project viability.

BEAM is available on a fee-for-service basis. A highly tailored analysis can be constructed with as little as two man-months of effort and is scalable to meet specific client needs. Please contact Michael Marquis at Enegis, LLC to arrange a scoping conversation.


Enegis specializes in large-scale, highly-customized, quantitative GIS-based resource and economic models, involving compilation of vastly disparate data sets within a common analysis framework. Enegis terms these constructs quantitative geoanalytical models (QGMs) and is highly adept at integrating a wide array of scientific and engineering disciplines through these customized GIS constructs. Our expertise involves data schema design, data structure development, customized geoprocessing routines, innovative programmatic methodologies, dynamic scenario modeling, and robust economic, engineering, and scientific analysis.

BEAM was partially developed with funds from the National Energy Technology Laboratory.

Michael Marquis
Project Manager
Enegis, LLC
Reviewed by:
Neil A. Ward
FRA Vice President, Public Affairs


As we move toward our 25th year of Log A Load For Kids’ existence, due to the creative efforts of a group of far-sighted individuals in South Carolina, I have to celebrate one very important individual who played a key role in our great success. During the decades through which FRA has served as Log A Load’s national sponsor, Linda Gibson, as FRA’s staff liaison, left a strong mark. Please join me in wishing Linda every success in her future endeavors and in thanking her for helping to grow Log A Load’s cumulative donations to children’s hospitals to over $34 million during her years with FRA.


Now we move forward, with former FRA President Richard Lewis stepping up as our liaison. Richard is a long-time Log A Load supporter over the decades, and he will continue to further our efforts and successes in supporting the kids at all 85 CMN hospitals nationwide.


At our National Log A Load Advisory Group meeting this past September, we decided that the best and most effective way to celebrate our 25th Anniversary would be for each state program to make a point of highlighting the 25-year mark at our normal state events and fundraisers. There are plans to create a special commemorative logo. We are also working on a project to develop wooden log trucks with the Log A Load logo in clear plastic display boxes, with a contribution slot on the top of the box. State Log A Load campaign folks will take the display boxes to local fundraising events and encourage contributors to “Bury the Log Truck” with cash.


National celebrities, such as Bobby Goodson, of Swamp Logger fame, and Chuck Leavell, musician, tree farmer, and author, have both agreed to appear in Public Service Announcements for us, along with other forestry heroes, to be identified.


That’s 25 years behind us. Logging and forestry people everywhere are committing ourselves for the growth and miracles of the next 25.

Rich Palermo Chair
Log A Load For Kids Foundation
Support your state’s Log A Load For Kids campaign! To find your state’s Log A Load organization and contact person,
Winter 2014
Wednesday, 26 February 2014 21:59

Understanding Logging Cost

The WSRI Technical Team, chaired by Crad Jaynes, has awarded two research projects for the years 2013 and 2014, as approved by the WSRI Board of Directors.

The first is Developing Western Logging Cost as a Basis for Western Logging Cost Indices, to be undertaken by Beth Dodson, Todd Morgan, Steve Hayes, and Josh Meek, of the University of Montana’s College of Forestry & Conservation and the affiliated Bureau of Business and Economic Research (BBER).

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 21:33

Forestry and the Tailoring Rule

What Is EPA’s Tailoring Rule, and How Might It Touch Forest Operations?

Interview with American Forest & Paper Association President and CEO Donna Harman

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 21:18

May 7-9 in Virginia Beach: It Starts With Us

FRA members are hands-on problem solvers, so it wasn’t hard for your National Meetings Committee to agree on a theme for our eightieth Annual Meeting, this coming May 7-9 in Virginia Beach, Virginia: It Starts With Us.

Our sessions in Virginia Beach will look at those four words in every connection. Certainly the business of manufacturing forest products starts with the landowners, loggers, and foresters who form the wood supply chain, and whose work is, in large part, taking responsibility for challenges and identifying opportunities, often in difficult situations.

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