AUGUSTA — It was big, metal and lurking in the ground between a Blaine Avenue neighborhood and Camp Keyes.

Now, it’s being, or possibly already has been, cut up for scrap.

A large crane was used to remove a no-longer-used Greater Augusta Utility District water tank Wednesday morning from a tight spot between a row of residential backyards and the fence surrounding Maine National Guard’s Camp Keyes.

Brian Tarbuck, superintendent of the utility district, said the tank was discovered when the Department of Transportation was removing trees as part of safety improvements for the nearby Augusta State Airport.

The tank likely once was a booster to increase water pressure at Camp Keyes. But, Tarbuck said, it was made unnecessary decades ago when a booster pump was installed which served the same purpose. It hasn’t been used since.

“We hadn’t used it in over 35 years,” Tarbuck said of the tank. “The thinking (in removing it) was it’s just sitting there, we don’t need it anymore, it could rust and collapse and somebody could fall through and get hurt.”


The W.H. Green & Sons crane was used to remove the approximately 18,000-pound tank because, Tarbuck said, they didn’t want to drag the tank across backyards to Blaine Avenue and they couldn’t cut through the Camp Keyes fence for security reasons. So, instead, they lifted the tank up and over the fence and put it on a Clark’s Cars & Parts flatbed tractor-trailer to be hauled off.

“It’s probably being cut up for scrap right now,” Tarbuck said Wednesday afternoon. “The crane guys were awesome and the owner of the property around it was also awesome to work with, she was super-accommodating. We had some onlookers but it was really uneventful.”

He said it cost about $1,500 for the crane service.

The DOT project removing trees at the site is part of a larger airport safety improvement project, according to Airport Manager John Guimond.

Guimond said workers removed tall trees that could be hazardous to pilots because the trees could be in the flight path of planes landing at the airport.

He said shrubbery, in place of the tall tress, will provide a buffer for neighbors but not grow so tall they will become an issue for the airport.


Keith Edwards — 621-5647
[email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.