River authority buys compact Avant tool carrier
Published: 05 October, 2015
Conservators of the River Cam have bought an Avant 640 compact multi-purpose tool carrier for maintenance work on the river banks.
The self-funded river authority, with a history dating back to 1701, is responsible for a 14 mile stretch of navigation from Mill Pit in the centre of Cambridge to Bottisham Lock and is using the new machine with its variety of attachments to cut grass and hedges along the towpaths as well as tree trimming and seasonal weed cutting.
Navigation Officer Ralph Honey said: ‘Our work is so much easier with the Avant, mainly thanks to its width of just 1.29m. Previously, we used an old tractor which was far too big for some of the very narrow towpaths and meant we had to employ specialist contractors for jobs the Avant now tackles with ease.'
The Avant is also proving ideal for handling a variety of materials in the authority's compound and even loading heavy sheet steel piling onto work boats using a set of pallet forks.
The 640 model is one of a range of compact tool carriers with more than 150 different attachments available from Finnish manufacturer Avant Tecno. It is powered by a Kubota diesel engine developing 28kW (37.5hp) and features an articulated chassis with power to all four wheels and a two-speed hydrostatic drive system for manoeuvrability and traction.