I don’t think this is a new CME drill rig (Central Mine Equipment Company), but its a model I’m not familiar with. The CME-550X is designed to minimize ground contact pressure for jobs with wet ground, snow covered ground, and sensitive terrain. It can drill angle holes, or setup vertical on steep uphill terrain. We’ve used a track-mounted CME-75 drill rig on many jobs for difficult access work, I wonder if this machine would have done the trick instead. Anyone ever seen one of these on a job?
On May 15 a drilled shaft rig operated by Mid America Drilling Corp was nearly swallowed by the 9-ft diameter hole it was drilling for a cell tower foundation near Harlan, Iowa. Fortunately nobody was injured and the truck did not suffer any significant damage.
In Arizona, the standard of practice is to use a temporary surface casing to prevent dangerous failures like that. I once saw pictures of a drilling contractor superindendent almost get sucked into a collapsing shaft, even with the temporary casing. Pretty scary stuff. Source: Harlan Tribune. (Photo by Samantha Bruck)