In mid January of 2008, one of the worst natural disasters in railroad history occurred. A giant mud slide buried Union Pacific’s important Interstate 5 corridor in one of the most rugged and difficult parts of the Cascade Mountains of western Oregon. The route, which typically saw 15 freight trains a day plus Amtrak’s Coast Starlight, was closed.
Union Pacific contracted with three local contractors to assist in cleaning up the mess and getting the track back online. After four weeks of frustration with the local contractors we were invited to the site to provided input on expediting the project. After four hours of consultation, we were invited to be part of the team. Within a week, we secured our Oregon contractor license and had over 25 pieces of equipment and 60 men working around the clock until the track was back in service some three months later..