Financial alternatives for weighbridge funding

Investment in capital equipment such as a weighbridge system is tough in the current economic climate. Chris McAllister, product manager at Avery Weigh-Tronix, outlines some alternative financial options.

Budget cuts put pressure on vehicle workshops

Generally, the way to maximise efficiency is to invest in new technology and equipment. In the case of the wide range of services provided by local authorities, this often translates into regular renewal of vehicle fleets. But Government cutbacks are resulting in changes to traditional working practices, writes Tony Richards.

No compromising on winter maintenance practice

Croatian manufacturer, Rasco has appointed Pelican Engineering as sales and servicing partner for England, Scotland and Wales. Ivan Fanicevic, CEO of Rasco, points out that with a top manufacturing facility and an established dealer network, winter maintenance equipment need not cost the earth.

A new benchmark in bin weighing

Geesinknorba has developed a system that handles different combinations of bins and RFID chips and weighs very accurately without pausing the lifting cycle down. The company believes it has set a new technological benchmark,which will have universal appeal.

Robust tablet computer mounting solution from Ram Mount

Sporting a patented non-slip design with both shock & vibration dampening, RAM Mount is proving to be an essential system for any mobile electronics application.

The importance of driver training courses

What steps can operators of commercial vehicles take to protect their investment and manage their costs? Stephen Ellis, Head of Training for thre Road Haulage Association, points out that driver training can deliver great savings in any operation.

New hybrid RCV reaches UK shores

NTM's Hybrid KGLS-2B is a specialist recycling vehicle that collects two fractions of waste at once, and it is heading to our shores to make its debut at RWM in Birmingham.

Campey Turf Care Systems lauches new equipment at Saltex

The Vredo Turf Fix will renovate diverse fine turf surfaces from bowling greens to less accessible areas such as around bunkers, water features, bridges, gardens or even war graves, all to professional sports pitch standards. The 0.85m width lightweight unit only requires a low hp output for power and is designed to be hitched onto/towed by a professional grass mower. The Vredo double disc system is still a feature of the Turf Fix.

New triple reel mower covers all areas

Fulfilling grass cutting requirements in the extensive parks and open spaces of two Yorkshire cities while working to increasingly tight operating budgets, is the challenge for their respective local authorities and contractors. In both Sheffield and Bradford, John Deere's new 8400 Commercial triple reel mower is shouldering the workload – and has proved highly successful.

Up there with the kids

LAPV decided to make several little–and big–boys very happy. Joshua Malone (3) was treated by NTM-GB and Wiltshire Council to a ride in a brand new RCV. Mercedes-Benz Unimog presented Jose Sanchez de Muniain (5) with a limited edition Unimog U400 from Technical Lego.

New vehicle solution keeps Havant BC's plant on the go

Paul Stanley's grounds maintenance team at Havant Borough Council traditionally used panel vans with 16ft trailers to transport mowers to and from site. Paul recognised that the vans weren't used to their optimum. So he approached KFS Special vehicles, and together they came up with a solution that delivered tangible efficiency savings, reports Ann-Marie Knegt.

Case study: a different league of second-hand vehicles

Swindon Commercial Services (SCS) is a wholly owned company of Swindon Borough Council and is responsible for the waste collection, recycling, grounds and housing maintenance and fleet services within the local authority area. SCS operates a fleet of 16 RCVs and, in the past, if there was any shortfall in capacity due to a vehicle being off road for example, they would hire a replacement vehicle. In order to continue to focus on efficiencies, in September this year when an older vehicle was due for replacement, SCS decided to look at the possibility of purchasing a secondhand vehicle.

As good as new

An increasing number of local authorities are choosing to use a remanufactured refuse fleet, because a remanufactured vehicle can cost as little as 20% of the price of a new RCV, and has the same same operational life time.

Sorting it out at the kerb

This year's RWM – held at the NEC in Birmingham – saw the launch of an unusual new vehicle that is set to revolutionise recycling practice in the UK and Ireland, writes Ann-Marie Knegt.

A hog is not just for Christmas

Cambridgeshire County Council recently opened a new guided Busway which has been designed to relieve congestion problems. However, the dedicated winter maintenance equipment was too large to effectively treat the adjacent track. A solution was found in a multifunctional vehicle that can operate all year round.

Anticipating driver behaviour

There's a lot more to cutting fleet costs than simply checking fuel consumption. Preventing accidents and reducing service and maintenance costs also play a big role. One solution is to make drivers aware of their own prowess behind the wheel. A new system that relays accountibility about driving behaviour directly on to the person behind the wheel is now set to hit the UK.

Dennis Eagle stays true to its British identity

Dennis Eagle traditionally used to send its newly built RCVs from its manufacturing facility in Warwick to the paintshop in Aldridge near Birmingham. This meant the vehicles had to be driven there to be painted, and then be driven back to Warwick.

New diagnostic tool launched at CV Show

When it comes to truck and bus maintenance, system compatibility is the key to any purchase of diagnostic equipment and the Jaltest system puts comprehensive on-board diagnostic systems coverage – across an extensive range of vehicles – into the hands of every truck and bus mechanic.

Drivers towards RCV design

Ann-Marie Knegt travelled up to Warwick to visit Dennis Eagle's manufacturing facility,where Norman Thoday (MD) revealed his views on the current state of the industry and how increased efficiency pressures will shape RCV design.

Long distance sweeping

Midlothian and Renfrewshire Council are now operating three new Aebi Schmidt SK600 sweepers,which are ideally suited for long distance performance on the roads of the Scottish Highlands.

Plugged into the future

Louise Woodward, Programme Administrative Officer for Cenex, comments on the roll-out of a national charging infrastructure for electric and hybrid vehicles.

Prevention is better than cure

In today's era of landfill charges and LATs reporting, the weighbridge is at the heart of a waste organisation's data collection. Downtime can bring an operation to a halt - with direct repercussions for both cash flow and adherence to legislation - making an effective preventative maintenance programme vital, says John Coughlan of Avery Weigh-Tronix.

The bottom line of service

Vehicle outsourcing can help LAs focus on core services, writes David Hunt, Managing Director, Ryder Ltd.

The shattering reality of noise levels in recycling

David Wilford of No Going Back Productions, a specialist in noise measurement for waste collection and recycling services, discusses noise risks for recycling operatives, and how to overcome these.

Harrow Council cuts waste by £3.5m

Harrow Council's new waste and recycling service is used as a benchmark by other Local Authorities. It has won a number of awards and is set to deliver £3.2m in savings over the next 10 years. However none of this would have been possible without its high quality source of addressing, Harrow's Local Land and Property Gazetteer (LLPG).

Are the dark days over for the hire industry?

Ann-Marie Knegt visited Widnes to speak to Sid Sadique and Russell Markstein from Riverside Truck Rental,who believe that applying business models from private industry to Local Authority fleet management is the only sensible way forward. However, in order to succeed, major culture change is required.

See and be seen

Clare Summers points out that using efficient lighting and beacon systems can actually reduce downtime on waste management and street cleansing vehicles.

Sweden brings ownership of waste back to the public

Louise Murphy visited several Swedish waste operators to see how they turn their waste into a valuable resource. NTM's Quatro system makes ipossible to recycle a staggering 90% of all materials, with only 10% being sent to the incinerator.This vehicle is now also available in the UK.

TRL brings a taste of the future

Lucy Phillips of TRL reports on IRWIN, a project which aims to use an improved local winter index to assess present and future needs for winter maintenance.

Professional in-vehicle storage – why it matters

The tools and equipment carried in the rear of any local authority maintenance vehicle should be properly secured and organised, both for health and safety reasons but also for greater operational efficiency, explains Kevin Woodward, managing director of the Vehicle Enhancement Division of Bott.

Opportunities to cut costs and drive efficiencies

Rising costs, shrinking budgets and the pressure for constant improvement in quality and service makes it a tough time to run a fleet. But it's not all doom and gloom says Simon Cassidy, Sales Director of Xcess-A-Bus.

In-vehicle technology

Rugged in-vehicle computers with built-in telematics from Mobexx are powering Waste Collector from Bartec Systems. This efficiency-boosting system is used by local authorities throughout the UK to provide a direct real-time link between waste collection / street scene crews and their offices via the in-cab Mentor Ranger PC.

Using technology to help manage the workload

Both local authorities and their stakeholders can benefit from significant service improvements when telematics are installed including more efficient use of resources and instant access to real-time information.

Grass verge cutting helps Cumbria's tourist trade

At times of budget restraint and shifting highways authority priorities just how important is it to maintain and control roadside verges? In Cumbria it is considered not just a safety matter, but an integral element in the policy to increase tourism and help the economy, writes Tony Richards.

Choosing between the online auction and the traditional auction

In these times of budgetary pressures local authorities are looking at all options to save costs, and the opportunity to dispose of defleeted vehicles and plant for a reduced outlay is obviously going to be attractive. Or is it, best practice is about achieving the highest net value for the asset, which means looking at not only the costs of remarketing but also at the prices achieved from the sale.

Buy or hire - which is best?

SFS managing director, Bob Sweetland, provides some insight into the question of buy or hire. He says the private and public sectors can work together to continue to deliver efficient, high quality front-line services despite diminishing budgets.

Bulk diesel supplies – strategic resilience and cost management

Fuel is the most significant on cost for alltransport operators. As the business grows,so does the fuel bill and its potential toimpact on profitability.If there is space for a storage tank on thepremises, then there will be a case forpurchasing bulk supplies, comments Stephen Hannan from Merridale.

Can you finance your vehicle fleet for less?

Rob Kerridge of Sector Treasury Services explains how new accounting treatment of leasing and hire arrangements may point the way to more cost effective ways of structuring these contracts.

Keeping track of your salt

Julian Athawes, MD of Halomec, introduces a new integrated weighing and inventory reporting system for salt loading, that could give councils an extra edge in planning and managing their winter service.

Dennis Eagle's new strategic alliance is set to deliver heavy-duty hybrids

Norman Thoday, Dennis Eagle's MD, explains the background to the new strategic alliance with BAE Systems which has been set up to develop hybrid technology and bring to market a serious alternative for his customers.

Cumbria Waste takes on a Volvo frontline machine for its new MRF

Cumbria Waste Management Ltd has taken delivery of the first Volvo L110G to be sold in Great Britain as part of a significant investment which includes the completion of their brand new materials recycling facility on the outskirts of Workington.

Sorting it out at the kerb

This year's RWM – held at the NEC in Birmingham – saw the launch of an unusual new vehicle that is set to revolutionise recycling practice in the UK and Ireland, writes Ann-Marie Knegt.

New vehicle solution keeps Havant BC's plant on the go

Paul Stanley's grounds maintenance team at Havant Borough Council traditionally used panel vans with 16ft trailers to transport mowers to and from site. Paul recognised that the vans weren't used to their optimum. So he approached KFS Special vehicles, and together they came up with a solution that delivered tangible efficiency savings, reports Ann-Marie Knegt.

New brooms at Scarab

Since its inception in 1979, Scarab Sweepers has been through considerable changes. So what can we expect now that the French family- owned Fayat Group is taking a majority shareholding in the Kent-based sweeper manufacturer?

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LAPV (Local Authority Plant and Vehicles) is the only UK information source purely dedicated to local authority vehicles and affiliated plant equipment. Appearing four times a year, it offers well-researched technical articles on the latest equipment/technology as well as in-depth interviews with key industry professionals. More...



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