News, Truckie Profiles

Truckie saves home from collapse

House remover Jo Veneman recently received an SOS from a man whose building had slid off its supports at sleepy Carmody Street in Townsville.

Veneman is the owner of Renewable Homes and is renowned for saving and often relocating old Queenslander houses.

She swiftly came to the rescue after a high fence was placed around the house for safety purposes.

When news spread around town about the leaning house, hundreds of members of the public visited Carmody Street to check it out.

Big Rigs was amongst them and saw Veneman and a worker named Kevin Nolan inspecting the site before the work started.

Jo Veneman (left) and worker Kevin Nolan on Carmody Street in Townsville.

“We received a phone call hours after an owner builder was attempting to raise his home using a pier jacking system. It appears whilst pulling out the existing stumps, the skid steer has bumped the house, sending it for a slide. The house had come to rest on top of the skid steer, a steel beam at the back of the building and a steel beam at the front. Three points of contact was all that was preventing the home from completely collapsing and possibly sliding into the neighbouring property,” she said.

Veneman and her workers used the company’s purpose-built house lifting equipment, working non-stop for 10 hours to safely secure and level out the home onto frames.

“Although we gave no guarantees, our team worked together, pulling off the impossible. The iconic Queenslander home would’ve been demolished had we not been able to save her,” she said.

Veneman runs two Mack Trident trucks and has moved more than 90 houses since starting the business six years ago.

Both Macks are powered by 535hp motors, while one has a 12-speed gearbox and the other an 18-speed.

Renewable Homes also has two tri-axle hydraulic trailers and it can take three to four days to load a house on either before removal.

Veneman believes she is the only female in Australia who runs a house removal and relocation business.

Thanks to the efforts of Renewable Homes, this grand old house has a new lease of life and will be around for a long time to come.

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