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Archive for 2012

Import Impasse

By Tim Rasmussen , Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

This year, just before we loaded the container for shipment, one of our board members donated a small Honda motorcycle, and we purchased another used motorcycle for our use in Guatemala. We noted the items on our shipping papers and all seemed to be in order. Seemed is the operative word in this situation.

We had no idea there was anything wrong until the container had arrived in the port of Guatemala, Puerto Quetzal. The customs officials noted that the titles of the motorcycles were not with the documents. A few worried calls located the documents still in the file with the shipping agent. Somehow they had not made it into the packet that was necessarily to be sent with the ship. We corrected this and sent the documents by overnight express.

Then the real problem surfaced. There is a law in Guatemala that has (more…)

Just Right

By Tim Rasmussen , Monday, November 26th, 2012

Monday the 29th of October came right on schedule. But the truck carrying the container did not. It was supposed to be at the Bartholomew shop at 9 am, but at about 8:30 Gary got a call from the dispatcher in Seattle, asking when the latest we could load was. In a few moments it became obvious that the truck had not left Seattle yet. (more…)

Gearing up for 2013

By Tim Rasmussen , Saturday, October 6th, 2012

This the time of year when Water for Life International is gearing up for the coming drilling season in Guatemala. As I write this in October, the material that will be shipped in a container has been gathered together, weighed and inventoried. The yard around the Bartholomew shop is lined with pallets of material and supplies, all carefully tarped or wrapped in plastic for protection from the possibility that it might snow before we can get these precious supplies into a container and headed south.

This year we plan on 57,000 lbs in the container. A good portion of it is the weight of 500 feet of brand new steel casing for wells. This was a gift from Paul Anderson who had read about our need and wanted to help. We thank him for his gift. It will benefit many people for many years.

This year we are going to try to introduce the container through the office of the wife of the President of Guatemala. She is in charge of the importation of (more…)

Eight New Wells

By Tim Rasmussen , Sunday, May 13th, 2012

This past season Water for Life International drilled eight water wells in NE Guatemala. We also refurbished several pumps that have been in service for some time. We now are providing safe water for over 30 villages in all and are providing water for about 12,000 to 15,000 people.

We have made good contacts with the municipal authorities in Poptun and San Luis and have had many requests for wells that we cannot fill. The mayor of San Luis is particularly interested in having wells drilled throughout his district and is willing to subsidize their installation. The mayor of Poptun is likewise interested, but the financial situation in Poptun is precarious. They would like to help pay, but at present have no money. (more…)

Dan Kinney Truck in Ditch

By Tim Rasmussen , Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Dan Kinney, Pat Clark and I had been to the village of Santa Cruz to repair a hand pump. We had learned of the problem when Dan and I had gone to several villages a few days earlier to check on the pumps. This one was not producing any water at all. We attempted to talk with the villagers about the problem, but learned that most of them spoke a dialect, so all we could get learn was that the pump had not been working for about 3 months.

We took the pump service truck out and pulled the cylinder out of the well and replaced it with a slightly larger new one. The work had gone well and although it had been raining as we worked, there were no particular problem encountered and we were happy but wet as we drove home.

On the way home we passed through (more…)

Fueling our Efforts

By Tim Rasmussen , Sunday, February 12th, 2012

The shipping container arrived safely and with the help of students from ICAP school, we were able to get it unloaded in about 2 and one half hours. Nothing was lost or damaged in the shipping process. We were pleased to have the supplies and equipment safely in our shop.

One of the things we shipped was a fuel trailer. A donor had given us a 400 gallon trailer for our diesel fuel. Gary had worked on it in Spokane to get it ready for use. We wanted it so we could refuel our trucks without the hassle of transferring fuel in five gallon cans and making multiple stops at the station with the trucks.

We decided to take the fuel trailer to Poptun and get 200 gallons of fuel and see how it worked. We should have thought harder on it before (more…)

Container Shipping 2012

By Tim Rasmussen , Sunday, January 1st, 2012

The Water for Life organization is headquartered near Spokane Washington, and our shop is located in rural NE Guatemala. We have one chance per year to send things down for our project, so the successful shipping of the container is very important to our progress. It is also a major expense item. Usually, the total for shipment and customs is about $16,000. USD

Our shipping agent is Jim Griffiths of Jimak Transportation International in Quebec Canada. Mr. Griffith sent a truck from Tacoma Washington to Jasper Oregon, with an empty container and be partially loaded, and then to Spokane on December 8, to finish loading, and then to (more…)