In 2006, American Cranes & Transport (ACT) magazine created its benchmark ACT Transport 50. The goal back then was to produce the first credible listing of North America's largest transport companies.

That first year we compiled a list that included some 40 companies, and in 2007 our list included 50 companies. This year our list contains information about 63 companies that do business in the realm of heavy and specialized transportation.

With our third opportunity to survey the companies in this sector, we have gained new insight in data collection and interpretation of the business of specialized transport. Again this year, we went the extra mile, ranking companies in this listing in two ways - first by fleet size and then by total maximum transport capacity by weight of all relevant equipment in a company's fleet.

The ranking is based on information supplied by the companies according to a standard inquiry form completed by those companies and returned to ACT.

While we have worked to produce the most accurate ranking possible, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information supplied. As with the ACT 50 listing of the world's largest crane-owning companies, the idea is that with each successive edition, the list is improved, largely thanks to input from readers. Comments and suggestions are encouraged.

While there is room to expand and improve the Transport 50, we try hard to get as many replies as possible by encouraging hundreds of potentially relevant companies to fill out and return the application form. This year we mailed forms to more than 750 companies.

That said, while we have managed to increase the number of companies in our ranking, we realize our work is not complete. With the help of readers and those companies that did not respond to our call for information, we can expand and improve the list again next year.

In addition, in some cases firms included in our list last year did not re-submit information this year. We decided to include their 2007 information as estimates, giving these companies a year's grace period.

As with all our database development, we made every effort to ensure the accuracy and completeness of this information but take no responsibility for errors, omissions or incomplete information.

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