A windstorm in Cutbank has forced a major change for the megaload of oil equipment headed into Montana, necessitating a stay of nearly two weeks in Bonner.

Department of Transportation Motor Carrier Division Director Duane Williams said on Friday, January 10, that the reason why the massive shipment has been sitting on the Idaho side of Lost Trail Pass, was so that plans could be changed for a trailer reconfiguration in Bonner, rather than Cutbank.

"The Omega Morgan load was originally going to change trailer configurations at a facility up in Cutbank, but that facility blew down during some strong winds over the holiday weekend," Williams said. "The company did make a switch and decided they would go ahead and use Bonner to make that trailer reconfiguration."

Williams said the change could take as long as two weeks, so the giant load will be staying in the Bonner area while equipment is gathered and Omega Morgan personnel make the necessary changes.

"The Department of Transportation will be issuing a permit for the shipment to cross over into Montana later this afternoon," Williams said. "However, due to the conditions of the permit, they will not be able to travel on the weekends, so the earliest the shipment could continue wouldn't be until Monday. Right now the weather doesn't look all that great anyway, but that can quickly change."

Another shipment is headed toward Montana, and with optimal conditions, could arrive in Missoula in another two to three weeks.

Department of Transportation Motor Carrier Division Director Duane Williams