The Boom Logistics team from the Blackwater operation in Central Queensland (CQ) hosted a traditional welcome and smoking ceremony for the naming of the newest addition to its crane fleet.
The area of Central Queensland, traditionally owned by Ghungalou people is bound by the Dawson River in the east, the Comet River in the west, the Mackenzie River in the north and Bigge Range in the south. This land includes the Blackwater depot, and this is a major reason Boom wanted to honour and pay tribute to the Ghungalou people.
Rod Welfare, BOOM Logistics’ CQ regional manager, explains a bit more.
“Boom CQ management and the Ghungalou crew here in the Blackwater depot worked closely with local indigenous leaders and the Ghungalou Aboriginal Corporation to come up with a fitting tribute to the people. We were granted permission to name the new crane ‘Ghungalou’ and to decorate it with the totem of a rock wallaby, which represents the men of the tribe.
“We have a significant operation here at Blackwater with over 70 crew and we run a fleet of 43 cranes. The fleet ranges from a 15t Franna through to the new 300t Grove all terrain we’ve named Ghungalou. We pretty much operate in the same country of the Ghungalou nation which made the recent ceremony all the more relevant,” he said.
According to Welfare, Boom’s CQ operations have a strong connection with local indigenous communities.
“Across the Blackwater and Mackay operations we have a fair amount of indigenous representation in our work force. We have two Ghungalou men working on the team here in Blackwater, which made the process of obtaining artwork and the story behind it a little easier.
“The totem of a rock wallaby was selected here, and it represents the men of the tribe, who traditionally travelled to “do the work” including hunting and gathering food. According to indigenous culture the wallaby is one of the animals that has an innate knowledge of the land and its mythos. It teaches indigenous wisdom, and communion or journeying with a wallaby if you hold in your heart respect and humbleness, can yield much,” he said.
Welfare goes on to explain the significance of the naming and smoking ceremony to the Ghungalou Nation and its people.
“We had elders and other Ghungalou nation members travel from as far as north of Cairns and south from Brisbane. It meant a lot to them to be here and to see this happen. A couple of the elders were quite vocal in getting a rock wallaby totem on the crane to remind younger members of the Ghungalou nation what they are capable of achieving,” he said.
Boom Logistics, CEO, Tony Spassopoulos, also attended the ceremony and had this to say.
“Boom acknowledges the Ghungalou Nation people, who are the traditional owners of the land which we work in. We are pleased to announce, out of respect of their elders past, present and emerging, we name our 300 tonne crane in their honour, Ghungalou.
“This undertaking is an important symbol that reaffirms our commitment to the Ghungalou Nation people. Thank you very much to the Blackwater team and a special mention to Rodney Jarro, Jason Kuhn, Joel Little, Reg Little, Reg Ambum and Rodney Welfare who helped bring our values to life,” he said.
The Boom CQ operations are firmly focused on the mining sector, says Welfare.
“Working in and around the mining sector is a major component of our business. We work closely with the main miners and their subcontractors throughout the region,” he said.
The new 300 tonne Grove all-terrain is the largest crane permanently based in Central Queensland.
The GMK6300L-1 features a maximum tip height of 120m when working with its full 80m main boom and 37m of jib. When lifting with the main boom, it can lift up to 14t at full height and can handle this within a 14-28m working radius, offering a flexible range of applications. Overall capacities on the long boom set a new benchmark for the industry.
The GMK6300L-1 is powered by a 430 kW (580 HP) Mercedes Benz (Euromot 4/EPA Tier 4 final) engine in the carrier that features improved fuel economy over its predecessor. This is paired with a reliable Allison torque converter transmission. A 210 kW (280 HP) Mercedes Benz (Euromot 4/EPA Tier 4 final) engine powers the superstructure.
“It’s the largest crane in Central Queensland and it will be deployed on major projects. It provides that extra level of capacity in our fleet,” said Welfare.