Our recent item on a pair of hippos that traveled by forklift at the Philadelphia Zoo seems to have prompted a flood of similar announcements. We've since heard a number of other stories about out-of-the-ordinary cargoes, including the following:
When the North Carolina Zoo needed to bring a 13,000-pound elephant in for eye surgery, R&M Materials Handling Inc. of Springfield, Ohio, helped to pick up that considerable load. R&M supplied a Loadmate chain hoist as part of a harness used to lift C'sar, a 37-year-old male elephant, in preparation for the procedure.
In early December, the "FedEx Panda Express," a specially chartered Boeing 777F, carried giant pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang from Chengdu's Bifengxia Panda Base to Edinburgh, Scotland. The pandas traveled in custom-built enclosures provided by FedEx and were driven in a specially-decaled FedEx Express vehicle to the Edinburgh Zoo.
At about the same time, a FedEx Express MD11 aircraft was transporting a very different type of bear. The carrier delivered three 11-month-old grizzly bears from Alaska to their new home at the Detroit Zoo. The brothers, nicknamed Thor, Mike, and Boo, were rescued in October by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game after their mother was killed by an alleged poacher.
Penske Truck Rental donated transportation from Minneapolis to Norcross, Ga., for a shipment of 7,000 pounds of tiny bars of soap collected from hotels. The soaps will be reprocessed into new bars for delivery by the Global Soap Project to developing countries, where they will help to improve sanitation and reduce disease transmission.
And back in October, a Crown Equipment C-5 Series pneumatic-tire forklift safely transported the winning 1,370-pound pumpkin during the annual Pumpkinfest in New Bremen, Ohio, where the truck maker is headquartered. All together, Crown forklifts moved 16 pumpkins, each weighing more than 1,000 pounds.