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  • I Often Wonder What My Time Is Truly Worth…

    We exchange our time for money, that’s what being a grown up is. As drivers we exchange A LOT of time. Most of us try to fit in bits and pieces of “real life” when we get home, before we leave again on our next time exchange mission.

    I’ve hauled livestock in western Canada for a decade. I have a fabulous husband who does the same for a different company. We are very good at making time for each other, at least one day a week… except spring and fall, our busiest seasons. Summer is a flurry of vacations and galavanting and trying to make up for lost time before we go back to trying to figure out who has time to do laundry and groceries that week.

    Something happened last night that made me sad. I let my sister in law down. Her dog is very sick, I promised to drop off a special med that I had and some other things this morning before I went to work (assuming I had to work this morning, cattle dispatch is fly by night at best) I got home at 9pm, showered and started to gather things for her. Dispatch called “break down, you need to fill in NOW. You’ll be gone 3 days”. Cursing and swearing I packed my bag and left. The dog forgotten, not that I had time to prepare my hocus pocus potion now anyway.

    I realized this morning that the only person who can actually depend on me is my dispatcher. My husband and I have a long standing agreement to expect that things are always subject to change. My mother in law often invites us to dinner and I’m sure she’s used to ‘I don’t know if we will be home.. ‘ as an answer. Neither of us have kids, thank god.

    My company and Jason’s are similar. We are both valued “dependable” employees. I’ve been bribed with a beautiful 700hp 2005 W900L that I was allowed to custom design in my first year here. It’s “my” truck and no one but me has keys for it. They pay me well most of the time and I don’t complain. Jason has been bribed with a 2018 w900L flat top glider that he also had a hand customizing. The latest in a long line of beautiful trucks his company has bought for him.

    I guess you’re probably thinking ‘what’s the problem???’ Well… is this the payment for being unreliable to everyone but the guy at the 1800#? The little bonus for not only exchanging my time but also being on call 6 days a week 24 hours. 

    Maggie McCaskie

     Women's Trucking Federation of Canada

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    Sep 19, 2018 - 2 days ago

  • UK And Seven Major Companies Join Campaign For Vehicle Electrification

    The United Kingdom (UK) and seven major companies today joined the [email protected] campaign, which aims to speed up the deployment of electric vehicles and target at least 30 percent new electric vehicle sales by 2030.

    The expanded membership will strengthen the collective and coordinated approach to meeting the [email protected] objectives. With the UK, the campaign now has the support of most of the largest EV markets worldwide. The existing members are Canada, China, Finland, France, India, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden.

    The addition of companies active on the electric mobility front is also a milestone for the initiative, which was started last year by the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM). It represents a major step forward in the campaign’s multi-stakeholder approach and reflects the reality of the electric mobility transition that is taking place on the ground. The companies are: ChargePoint, Enel X, E.On, Fortum, Iberdrola, the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance and Vattenfall.

    The [email protected] campaign is organized by the CEM-Electric Vehicles Initiative (EVI), coordinated by the International Energy Agency. The campaign was launched during the 8th Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM8), held in Beijing in June 2017.

    Since then, the [email protected] campaign has succeeded in bringing together over thirty leading cities from twelve countries on the topic of urban electrification via the Pilot City Programme. This initiative acknowledges that cities are running at the forefront of the electric mobility transition and intends to demonstrate how local- and national-level cooperation brings about more successful and sensible policies.

    The campaign’s target of 30 percent new electric vehicle sales by 2030 applies collectively to the CEM-EVI membership, and not to individual countries. Governments who endorse the goal show leadership by establishing policies to reach the target and engage through EVI to report progress and share best practices.

    The EVI recognizes the importance of reducing carbon emissions in the transportation sector, which accounts for almost a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions and is one of the fastest-growing energy end use sectors. It also recognizes the importance of working towards energy efficiency and the mitigation of air pollution from transportation.

    These environmental, economic and social goals can be addressed through accelerated electrification of the transportation sector. In 2017, the global electric car stock reached more than 3 million vehicles, after growing exponentially for the last ten years, according to the latest Global EV Outlook report. In the report's [email protected] scenario, where all countries together achieve the [email protected] target on average, over 220 million electric vehicles (light-duty vehicles, buses and trucks) are deployed by 2030.

    The campaign supports the market for 2-3 wheelers, electric passenger cars, light commercial vans, buses and trucks (including battery-electric, plug-in hybrid, and fuel cell vehicle types). It also works towards the deployment of charging infrastructure to supply sufficient power to the vehicles deployed. Through EV deployment progress monitoring, analytical activities and policy recommendations, the EVI also aims at providing countries with informed material for the implementation of the most effective electric mobility policies possible.

    The campaign also aims to foster cooperation among many stakeholders on electric mobility to exchange experiences and deliver quality capacity building to policy makers and other electric mobility stakeholders in EVI countries and beyond.

    The [email protected] campaign is also supported by C40, the FIA Foundation, the Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI), the Natural Resource Defence Council (NRDC), the Partnership on Sustainable, Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT), The Climate Group, UN Environment, UN Habitat, and the International Zero Emission Vehicle Alliance (ZEV Alliance). It also received the backing of the Hewlett Foundation, the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st century (REN21) and the World Resources Institute (WRI) this year.

    The CEM is a unique partnership of 26 members, including most of the G20 economies, representing 90% of clean energy investment and working together to accelerate the global energy transition. CEM-EVI participants include Canada, Chile, China, Finland, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States.

    --------------

    “The electrification of transportation is a priority for the Government of Canada as demonstrated by our role as co-chair of the Electric Vehicle Initiative, and our ongoing support for the [email protected] campaign. Canada looks forward to furthering this dialogue as hosts of the CEM/Mission Innovation Ministerial meetings in Vancouver in 2019, as we continue on the path to a low-carbon transportation future.”

    - The Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources

    “Clean and decarbonised transports are key to reduce air pollution, fulfill the Paris Agreement and build a carbon-neutral world by 2050. Their development is one of the priorities of the French Climate Plan and the future Orientation Law on mobilities. France will act firmly to multiply by 5 the sales of electric vehicles by 2022 while public infrastructure network will be reinforced. France also encourages international actions, through cooperation and initiatives such as EVI or the Transport decarbonisation Alliance, to meet this global challenge.

    - Elisabeth Borne, Minister for Transport, France

    “The Paris Climate Agreement of 2015 gives a boost to the ambitions of the Netherlands in e-mobility, the transition to renewable energy and business opportunities in the field of charging infrastructure and the automotive sector. It’s our goal to have 100% of all new registered cars in 2030 being zero-emission cars.”

    - Stientje van Veldhoven, State Secretary for Infrastructure and Water Management, The Netherlands.

    “Electrifying the transport sector is an important part of the efforts to end fossil fuel dependence and to achieve Sweden’s goal of reducing transport sector emissions by 70 per cent by 2030. EVI is a key international initiative that promotes and supports electric vehicles to help reduce emissions in the transport sector in Sweden and globally”

    - Ibrahim Baylan, Swedish Minister for Policy cooperation and Energy

    “Our investors, customers and drivers have trusted ChargePoint to deliver solutions that not only combat climate change but will usher in the adoption of cleaner, more sustainable transport. Our efforts to support climate action are a byproduct of a decades long effort to build a successful business that has resulted in a comprehensive portfolio of technologies that enable people around the world to drive a better way.”

    - Pasquale Romano, President and CEO ChargePoint

    “Joining this initiative is of paramount importance to raise awareness and consensus about e-mobility’s benefits from an environmental, industrial and energy efficiency perspective. With this aim, Enel X is supportive of every private and public effort that further boosts EV uptake and that sets out concrete plans for the business, as well as becoming a driver of internal growth through the adoption of concrete initiatives that promote the e-mobility culture among our employees.”

    - Francesco Venturini, CEO of Enel X

    “It took us close to 20 years to reach the first million electric vehicles. It took 18 months to reach the second million and an additional eight months to reach the third million. During the past six months, we globally reached four million electric vehicles. This trend needs to continue exponentially if we are to reach the targets set out by the Paris Agreement. We continue to charge ahead by building the needed infrastructure for electric vehicles all across Europe. The future is electric and the [email protected] campaign helps us reach the future we all want.”

    - Tore Harritshoj, CEO, Mobility & LifeCycle Solutions Nordic, E.ON

    “Today, road transport accounts for more than 40% of global oil demand. At Fortum we strongly believe that the electrification of transport is one of the crucial elements in limiting air pollution and preventing further climate change. The ultimate need to improve air quality and limit emissions, as well as reduce noise caused by vehicles, is increasingly pressing in most urban areas. We are helping to tackle the challenge by offering customers convenient, affordable and accessible services in electromobility, and by developing cloud services and infrastructure for chargers around Europe.”

    - Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO Fortum

    “Iberdrola strongly supports actions towards a sustainable energy model. The campaign [email protected] encourages the transition to an electric transport sector which, together with the increase in electricity coming from renewable energies, will contribute to fight against climate change, reduce pollution and increase energy efficiency. This will also produce social and economic benefits.”

    - Ignacio S. Galán, Chairman and CEO of Iberdrola

    “Vattenfall is a leading European energy company and to us the climate issue is central and strongly influences our strategic direction. Vattenfall’s goal is to enable a fossil free society and one important action we take is to build the largest charging network in North Western Europe and of course we are also electrifying our own car fleet. We hope this will inspire others to act and that we together can achieve the [email protected] target.”

    - Magnus Hall, President and CEO of Vattenfall

    “With a large number of vehicles on the road registered to companies, we know business has an instrumental role to play in driving the transition to electric transport. The Climate Group’s EV100 initiative brings together leading companies choosing electric vehicles for their fleets and installing charging infrastructure at their premises by 2030. Governments and businesses must take action together, joining forces in a shared ambition for electric transport and sending a clear market signal to accelerate a roll-out of electric vehicles.”

    - Helen Clarkson, CEO, The Climate Group 

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    Sep 19, 2018 - 2 days ago

  • Mag CC 3800-1 Lattice Boom Crawler Crane Lifts Spud Legs From Barge Split Tray Makes Fast Progress Possible For Al Faris At Shipyard In The United Arab Emirates

    UAE-based crane service provider Al Faris dispatched a team to Hamriyah, at one of the biggest shipyards in the region, to lift three 72-meter-long, 130-tonne spud legs from a barge – a job that not only required a powerful crane, but also the right touch. The Demag CC 3800-1 proved to be the perfect machine for the project.

    “Once we determined all the required parameters for the three lifts, we decided that our CC 3800-1 was the best possible fit for the job,” says Hillary Pinto, Founder and Managing Director of the Dubai-based Al Faris Group, when explaining why the company decided on this crane. However, the unit first had to be transported to the work site. The company’s own lowbed trailers needed a good ten hours to complete the 82-kilometer journey from the Al Faris location in Dubai Industrial City to the work site. Al Faris’ own all terrain cranes were used in order to set up the CC 3800-1.

    On the safe side with the CC 3800-1

    At the work site, Al Faris used 10 of their specialized team members to get the crane ready to operate. The team decided on a configuration with a 108-meter-long main boom and a Superlift mast with a length of 36 meters. The central ballast totaled 50 tonnes, the Superlift counterweight 325 tonnes, and the counterweight on the superstructure 165 tonnes. Once set up this way, the CC 3800-1 was ready to lift the three spud legs, (having a gross weight of 130 tonnes each), at a maximum radius of 50 meters, swing them to the side, and then set them in place with the help of a 150-tonne crawler crane. The CC 3800-1 only used 68% of its available rated capacity for the lifts. The Superlift Split Tray proved to be especially useful for the project. This tray makes it possible to easily uncouple the counterweight when it is no longer required for the ongoing job, so that the crane can then move only with the Superlift counterweight that is still needed. “This clever quick coupling technology helped us save a lot of time at the shipyard,” Hillary Pinto reports while adding that he is extremely happy with the CC 3800-1’s performance in all other aspects as well.

    A job at dizzying heights

    Mr.Pinto has words of praise for his team as well: “Setting up the slinging gear at a height of around 80 meters is an enormous challenge that required a lot of skill. Both, lifting and setting the unwieldy steel structures was quite an impressive feat.” Fortunately, the weather played nice at all times and there were no space issues at the large shipyard facilities.

    The Al Faris team was also thankful for the support provided in person by a Terex Cranes engineer – as well as for the manufacturer’s assistance before planning started. “These services are something we really value when it comes to the after-sales support provided by Terex Cranes. Especially because the communication channels are very direct,” points out Hillary Pinto, who considers this to be another important reason why he relies on this manufacturer’s products and service. 

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    Sep 19, 2018 - 2 days ago

  • Hyundai Guarding Package For HL960HD Wheel Loader

    Protects Machine In Heavy Duty, Hazardous Applications

    Hyundai Construction Equipment Americas today announced the availability of a guarding package for its HL960HD wheel loader.  

    Developed to protect the machine from jobsite hazards found in various wheel loader applications, the guarding package for the HL960HD wheel loader helps ensure the operational integrity of key systems and components.  

    Hinged steel front and rear cabin guards protect glass from damage, while enabling quick access to the windows for cleaning and maintenance. A radiator grille guard protects against hazards such as debris, falling objects and collisions with stationary or moving objects, but also provides quick access to the cooling system and engine compartment. Guards for exterior lights, the bucket cylinder, axle seals, attachment hoses, engine belly and front-chassis undercarriage complete the package. 

    The Hyundai HL960HD wheel loader is a heavy-duty version of the standard HL960 wheel loader. It features as standard equipment a heavy-duty axle configuration plus front and rear axle-oil coolers. The HL960HD is well suited for the tough demands of niche applications such as logging, scrap handling, waste/refuse, and oil and gas pipe handling, in addition to traditional applications when extreme working conditions justify the machine’s heavy-duty design features.  

    “The Hyundai HL960HD wheel loader meets the growing need in a variety of markets for a machine that can stand up to the harshest operating conditions,” said Chad Parker, senior product specialist and sales trainer, Hyundai Construction Equipment Americas. “For heavy-duty work, the HL960HD provides a performance edge over competitive 4- to 4.7-cu yd wheel loaders, thanks to larger capacity axles, dual axle-oil coolers and the available guarding package.”   

    Parker added, “We expect most customers will choose to outfit the HL960HD with the guarding package, knowing that the machine will see duty in hazardous environments.” 

    For maximum performance and fuel efficiency, the HL960HD wheel loader is powered by a Tier 4 Final Cummins QSB 6.7 engine, producing 222 net hp (166 kW) and 1,070 lb-ft of torque at 1,500 rpm. This compares to the tuning of the same engine on the standard HL960 model that delivers 770 lb-ft of torque. Equipped with a standard 4.3 yd3 (3.3 m3) bucket, the HL960HD wheel loader has a standard operating weight of 44,092 lb (20,000 kg) and a rated tipping load of 31,691lb (14,375 kg).  

    An extended reach version is available, designated as HL960HDXT, featuring longer lift arms that provide approximately 16 inches (406 mm) of additional dump height and reach.  

    Both model versions’ drivetrains feature heavy-duty ZF axles and transmissions, including standard hydraulic auto-locking front differentials and available limited-slip rear differentials. Compared to the standard version of the HL960 wheel loader, the HL960HD has 26 percent higher front axle dynamic load capacity and 19 percent higher rear axle dynamic load capacity. Solid tires are available for the HL960HD as a dealer-installed option. 

    The HL960HD includes all the standard features – built into every HL900 series wheel loader –that combine to provide customers with an edge in performance, convenience, serviceability and safety, Parker noted. 

    Industry-leading warranties

    All of the new models and configurations are protected by Hyundai’s industry-leading three-year, 3,000-hour full-machine standard warranty and five-year, 10,000-hour structural warranty. Hyundai wheel loaders also have lifetime warranties on articulation joints. An optional program, Hyundai Extend, offers a customized extended warranty with the industry’s longest-term coverage.  

    Hyundai also includes five years of free access to its HiMATE remote management system which provides a variety of remote monitoring and diagnostic capabilities. 

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    Sep 19, 2018 - 2 days ago

  • TESTING BEGINS AT WORLD'S FIRST 'EMISSION-FREE' QUARRY

       


    On  August 29th, Volvo Construction Equipment and its customer Skanska began testing the viability of its Electric Site concept at Skanska’s Vikan Kross quarry, near Gothenburg, Sweden. The system, which incorporates electric and autonomous Volvo machines, will run in a real production environment for 10 weeks – delivering an anticipated 95% reduction in carbon emissions and 25% reduction in total cost of operations.

    Joakim Käpynen, production manager at Skanska’s Vikan Kross site and Uwe Müller, chief project manager for Electric Site at Volvo CE.


    Swedish companies Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) and Skanska are turning the quarrying industry upside down in a groundbreaking study to create the world’s first ‘emission-free’ quarry. Drawing on the electromobility and automation expertise of the Volvo Group, the research project, dubbed Electric Site, aims to electrify each transport stage in a quarry – from excavation to primary crushing, and transport to secondary crushing – although a negligible amount of diesel power will still be used. The system’s efficiency, safety and environmental benefits are set to impact both customers and society at large.
     
    Volvo CE and Skanska began testing the Electric Site concept on 29th August at Skanska’s Vikan Kross quarry near Gothenburg in Sweden, which produces aggregates for construction purposes as well as for asphalt and cement. Production will run for 10 weeks and has been designed to achieve the same output as Skanska’s usual equipment but, crucially, with up to 95% lower carbon emissions and up to 25% lower total cost of operations.
     
    “This is the first time that anything like this has been attempted in the quarrying industry and, if successful, Electric Site could serve as a blueprint for transforming the efficiency, safety and environmental impact of quarries around the world,” said Gunnar Hagman, CEO of Skanska Sweden.

    Overview of the Electric Site


    With Electric Site, Volvo CE and Skanska are challenging traditional ways of working in the quarrying industry. The project has involved developing new concept machines, work methods and site management systems which together, form a complete site solution. New technology encompasses machine and fleet control systems and logistics solutions for electric machines in quarries.

    “We have had to completely rethink the way we work and how we look upon machine efficiency – pushing the boundaries of our competence,” said Melker Jernberg, president of Volvo CE. “The total site solution we developed together with our customer Skanska is not a commercial solution for sale today and we will evaluate the outcome of the tests but we have learnt so much already, elements of which will be fed into our future product development,”

    FROM ELEPHANTS TO ANTS

    Three rigid haulers, for example, have been replaced by eight smaller prototype HX2 autonomous, battery-electric load carriers to transport the material from the primary mobile crusher up to the secondary static crusher.


    The prototype has advanced significantly since the HX1 was first shown to customers and members of the international press at the Volvo Exploration Forum in September 2016. “The HX1 was our proof of concept,” explained Uwe Müller, chief project manager for Electric Site at Volvo CE. “Once we knew it was feasible, we updated the design requirements for the HX2 to incorporate shared technologies and components from the Volvo Group, such as electric motors, batteries and power electronics. Integrating a completely new drivetrain was crucial to take full advantage of the groundbreaking electromobility developments                                                                                        Prototype HX2 autonomous, battery-electric load carrier

    that are happening inside the Volvo Group. Another new feature is the addition of a vision system, which allows the machine to detect humans and obstacles in its vicinity.”


    ELECTRIC UPGRADE

    The primary crusher on the Skanska site is loaded by the 70t dual-powered, cable-connected EX1 excavator prototype, which had not previously been seen by customers and press. The base machine for the EX1 is a Volvo EC750 model that has been upgraded to incorporate an electric motor in addition to the diesel engine.
     
    “To fit the new components in the machine without increasing its size required a significant amount of repackaging work,” Müller explained. “However, in terms of the operator interface and controls, nothing has changed – it’s operated in exactly the same way as a conventional Volvo excavator. If the cable is connected, the machine will automatically start in electric mode. If it’s not, it will start in diesel mode.”
     
    “Because the machine will be relatively static – only moving a few meters once or twice a day as the excavator works its way through the blasted rock – it’s ideally suited as a fully electric machine on a cable. This has allowed us to make it a zero-emission excavator when it’s plugged into the grid. However, we’ve designed it with flexibility in mind, so that we have the option of using the diesel engine when it’s needed, for example, to reposition the machine or quickly move it prior to blasting,” he continued.

    STRONG AND SILENT 

    The piles of material on the site are organised by the LX1, Volvo CE’s prototype electric hybrid wheel loader. The machine can deliver up to a 50% improvement in fuel efficiency, as well as significant reductions in emissions and noise pollution compared to its conventional counterparts. The LX1 is a ‘series hybrid’ that incorporates a driveline that consists of electric drive motors mounted at the wheels, electric-driven hydraulics, an energy storage system, a significantly smaller diesel engine and new machine architecture, including a new design of the lifting unit. It is this combination that enables the substantial gain in fuel efficiency. The prototype – which has 98% new parts and a                                                                                         Prototype EX1 dual-powered, cable-connected excavator

    fundamentally new machine design –can do the work of a wheel loader that is one size larger.


    MILESTONE INAUGURATION 

    Senior executives from Volvo CE and Skanska celebrated the start of the test period on 29th August alongside other important dignitaries at an official inauguration ceremony. Among the attendees were Martin Lundstedt, President and CEO of the Volvo Group; Melker Jernberg, President of Volvo CE; Anders Danielsson, President and CEO of Skanska; Gunnar Hagman, CEO of Skanska Sweden; and Mikael Damberg, Sweden’s Minister for Enterprise and Innovation. Representatives from the Swedish Energy Agency, Linköping University and Mälardalen University, WWF, the Swedish Aggregate Association, and the Swedish press also bore witness at this milestone occasion.
                                                                                                Prototype LX1 electric hybrid wheel loader



    “It is exciting to finally see how the Volvo prototype machines work together along with the charging systems. I feel extremely proud to be part of this innovation – and to work closely with such talented colleagues at Volvo CE and Skanska,” said Joakim Käpynen, production manager for Skanska’s Vikan Kross quarry. “Electric Site proves that with cooperation and transparency throughout the entire value chain, you can really make a difference.”

    Find out more here: www.volvoce.com/global/en/this-is-volvo-ce/what-we-believe-in/innovation/electric-site/ 


     

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    Sep 18, 2018 - 2 days ago

  • AED Retains Impact Public Affairs For Ottawa Representation

     Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) this week announced they have signed lobbying and public affairs firm Impact Public Affairs to represent them in Ottawa and throughout Canada. “I am extremely pleased to welcome Impact to the AED team,” stated Brian P. McGuire, AED’s President & CEO. “Impact has an outstanding reputation as one of Canada’s premier public affairs firms. Their seasoned political consultants understand government and have their fingers on the pulse concerning the current administration’s motivations and constraints. I expect them to be a tremendous asset to AED’s growing Canadian presence,” he added.

    Impact’s President Huw Williams will spearhead AED’s effort in Ottawa and beyond. Williams is a sought-after professional specializing in government and media relations. With extensive experience in the print and broadcast media, Williams has appeared frequently as a corporate spokesperson on CBC and CTV national news. In 2018, Williams was recognized as one of the Top 100 Lobbyists in Canada by the Hill Times Insider Guide. Mr Williams’ government experience is diverse, having served as Acting Chief of Staff to the Deputy Prime Minister of Canada; as a Senior Special Assistant to the Minister of Constitutional Affairs; and as a Legislative Assistant to the Speaker of the Alberta Legislative Assembly among other high profile positions. “Impact Public Affairs is excited to develop this new relationship with AED,” stated Williams. “AED is one of the premier trade associations in North America and their knowledge of, and commitment to, Canada is most impressive. We look forward to assisting them with legislative and public affairs issues as they endeavour to expand their footprint North of the border,” Williams concluded.

    “AED is excited to work with the Impact team on issues important to the Canadian construction equipment industry,” said AED’s Vice President of Government Affairs Daniel B. Fisher.  “With this partnership, AED members will see a new level of engagement in Canada that will increase the industry’s visibility among policymakers and result in policy solutions that induce economic growth and dealer profitability.”

    About AED: AED is an international trade association representing companies involved in the distribution, rental, and support of equipment used in construction, mining, energy, forestry, power generation, agriculture, and industrial applications.  More information is available at www.aednet.org.

    About Impact Public Affairs: Building relationships for over 20 years, Impact Public Affairs is a full-service firm based in Canada's capital with offices in Toronto and Montreal. More information is available at www.impactcanada.com

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    Sep 18, 2018 - 2 days ago

  • Conquering The White Mountains

    Deere equipment proves to be the perfect solution for Brazilian sea salt extraction.

    Construction and Ag equipment are being used in the salt extraction process.

    Along the tropical coast of northern Brazil, near the city of Mossoro, motorists pass a strange sight: rows of white mountains that look like snow.

    These large mounds are actually salt harvested from the ocean by Salinor – Salinas do Nordeste, a 30-year old company that produces 45% of Brazil’s sea salt.

    It was while travelling to and from work and looking at these salt piles that Vitor Dubiela, a Salinor engineer, got an idea.

    He’d worked with Veneza Equipment, a local Deere distributor, on another project, and he began to wonder what role John Deere and its machines might play in helping the company harvest salt.

    Dubiela contacted Veneza Equipment. With the distributor’s help, several studies were conducted to test the effects of sea salt on Deere construction equipment.

    “The extraction process takes place in an aggressive atmosphere due to the corrosion that the salt causes,” Dubiela explained.

    “We had to analyze the effect of the salt on the equipment, and this way we could take action and make improvements to the machines,” said Ajomar Medeiros, a representative of Veneza Equipment.

    These studies led to solutions, such as protective treatments on cooling package components, and helped pave the way for Salinor to begin using Deere construction machinery.

    About one year later, Salinor had reduced its number of salt extraction machines from 80 to 40, as the Deere equipment proved to be more efficient.

    “John Deere arrived at the moment we needed to increase the size of our equipment, so that we could harvest the salt quicker.” - Airton Torres, the administrator of Salinor

    The precise transmission system of Deere’s 670G Motor Grader, which provides smooth gear and steering changes, helped deliver better control and levelling accuracy, Dubiela said.

    “The equipment is ideal for harvesting the evaporated salt from the water,” he explained.

    And that wasn’t all. Deere’s 750J Crawlers organize the salt piles to make it easier for the 724K Loaders to load it on the trucks and wagons.

    “John Deere arrived at the moment we needed to increase the size of our equipment, so that we could harvest the salt quicker,” said Airton Torres, the administrator of Salinor.

    The company also took advantage of Deere technology with the remote monitoring provided by JDLink and ADVISOR.

    “The only company that met our aspirations was John Deere,” Dubiela added.

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    Sep 17, 2018 - 3 days ago

  • Airless Tires Now Available For Construction

    Tires are advancing at a rapid rate. Now, airless radial tires are available for the UTV market, meaning there is no pressure to maintain, eliminating the need to carry spare tires.

    As one instance, Michelin Tweel Technologies recently introduced a new 26-inch airless radial tire with four-bolt-wheel-pattern hub. The company says it was originally designed for use in military special operations on light-tactical vehicles and now is appropriate for use in industries such as construction.

    The airless tire is a single unit that replaces the current pneumatic tire/wheel/valve assembly. Once bolted on, there is no air pressure to maintain.

    However, when facing obstacles, the tire is designed to perform like a pneumatic radial tire, but with the durability and high damage resistance of an airless tire. Additionally, the advanced spoke technology helps dampen the ride and the low-pressure contact helps provide off-road traction performance.

    While this is one example, the use of airless tires is continuing to grow in the construction industry, as they offer benefits beyond those of traditional tires. 

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    Sep 17, 2018 - 3 days ago

  • Buy, Borrow, Rent or Lease: 4 Tips to Minimize Risk

    With the notorious volatility of the construction industry looming more over owners’ and contractors’ heads, machinery contracts are becoming increasingly important. Whether a single crane is rented, leased, bought, or borrowed can make or a break a company in a matter of years.​

    Particularly for small businesses, looking over contracts, future net profit, and utilization schedules for new gear has become a second language of construction. Mike Vorster of C.E.M.P. Central Inc. dissected this difficult task to its core principles during an education session at CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017.

    The main platform of consideration is not cost, Vorster claims, but risk. Adding to a fleet boils down to betting income against future profitability, a bet businesses make every day. But when acquiring new equipment, Vorster argues that there exist a unique set of parameters to consider that can effectively lower this risk.

    By examining a business’s net cash flow after tax, its available technology, its future workload, and its overall technical skill, the path to ownership becomes crystal clear.

    Understand ownership
    Aside from buying, knowing who owns the equipment makes a big difference, particularly when claiming depreciation on taxes. For example, an excavator leased under an operational lease is still owned by the lease house and claimed on their taxes; for a capital lease, it’s owned and claimed by the lessee. This subtle differentiation can push a profitable acquisition into the red come tax season.

    Weigh cash flow differences 
    Most of acquiring new equipment is weighing a business’s ability to lose cash flow against the future profitability of a machine. Purchasing equipment offers pure profits once it pays itself off, but requires intense cash flow loss at the beginning. On the other hand, leasing requires much less of an initial commitment, but the fixed payments kill any opportunity for pure profit.

    Examine future profitability
    New equipment requires work; without it, losses accrue quickly. Business’s comparing buying to other methods must first look inward at their future profitability. Without several years of work to give a new machine, the risk increases beyond reasonable levels. Without busy days of full workloads for the machine, cash flow may not over take costs, fixed or otherwise.

    Consider worker ability
    Worker ability must factor into the decision. New equipment requires training expenses, because untrained operators lacking in handling confidence will work hesitantly, impacting profitability. It’s important also to consider if the technology is already present in the fleet; new gear may not even be necessary, or maybe prove less uniquely useful than originally thought. 

    In the end, no option truly supersedes the other. Smaller businesses may take operational leases of newer technology to give them a competitive edge without needing large initial assets, while more established businesses may feel comfortable enough to take leases that end in buying. Whatever path a business chooses, Vorster’s four tips provide the clarity needed make the decision quickly, effectively and without regret.

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    Sep 17, 2018 - 3 days ago

  • Visionary Partnership Boosts Quarry Uptime

    The aggregates industry has had a few tough years in the United States but is now recovering. One limestone quarry not only survived those hard times but thrived – by focusing on the future in a site planning partnership with Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE).

    Volvo machines – the EC750E and A40D – working on site at Delta SEMO

    The Delta Companies Inc (Delta) is a site development and highway contractor specializing in asphalt paving and road construction materials, including aggregates. Delta operates five quarries and a sand and gravel pit. One of those quarries is located in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, near the Mississippi River. The Delta SEMO Quarry in South East Missouri has been a leading supplier of limestone to the local construction industry for more than 40 years. SEMO typically produces between 700,000 to one million tons a year from a 200 acre property with an open pit that is now over 400 feet deep. It is a solid business with ample reserves to keep serving customers for decades to come.

     Delta knows its business and has a plan for the future but was not satisfied with that. As a subsidiary of the Colas Group, Delta can leverage benefits from the special relationship Colas has with Volvo CE as a global key account customer. One benefit is access to the manufacturer’s site assessment program provided by its Global Key Accounts Management team.

    In this program, the Volvo CE Key Accounts Solutions team dispatches specialists to review all aspects of a site operation. The team provides a deep analysis of current and future business, lifts up best practices and uncovers potential areas of improvement. This is an extended dialogue that concludes with a prioritized list of recommendations which the customer can factor in to its immediate and strategic plans.

    Delta worked closely with Volvo CE to explore how to reduce costs and make its SEMO operation even more efficient. Taking a closer look at the customer’s machine fleet is just one aspect in the complimentary site assessment program. Drilling, blasting, crushing, stockpiling – all were included and considered during the team’s one-week site visit. They also looked at safety practices, site layout, business planning, reserves planning, environmental aspects and maintenance practice.

    From left David Nus, Director of Global Key Accounts at Volvo CE, Will Gmerek, Sales at dealer Rudd Equipment Company, Mike Martin, Aggregates Area Manager of Delta Companies Inc, and Craig Griffiths, Manager of Customer Solutions at Volvo CE

    TAKING THE (OVER)BURDEN OUT OF MINING

    While SEMO operations were running well, little tweaks were suggested to boost things further. The assessment team – led by David Nus, Director of Global Key Accounts at Volvo CE, and Craig Griffiths, Manager of Customer Solutions at Volvo CE – focused on an overburden project already underway and suggested ways to develop and maintain work benches and haul roads in an efficient and safe way.

    Other suggestions included aspects of maintenance and fleet management for their mobile fleet, as well as tips for operating a new Volvo EC750E recently delivered to SEMO. This work complemented the day-to-day support provided by the Volvo CE dealer, Rudd Equipment Company.

    “Our main role at Volvo CE is to sell mobile equipment, but that’s not our only role,” says David. “In these site assessments we want to be able to add value to our clients’ operations, highlight what’s important and advise organizations how to think strategically for the future. If Volvo CE can contribute in any way to a customer’s success, we become more than just a supplier, we are a true business partner.”

    Will Gmerek and Mike Martin discuss site aspects

    SMALL CHANGES THAT MAKE A BIG IMPACT

    SEMO is using a new Volvo EC750E excavator as a primary loader for its overburden removal though it does serve in limestone production as well. The excavator loads rigid dump trucks as well as articulated haulers, including a Volvo A40D articulated hauler that dates back to 2005 and boasts over 16,000 hours. The site assessment works well because it advises customers on the best way to use machines like these, to ensure the equipment is appropriate for the job at hand.

    The findings from site assessment vary from client to client. Some require more input in the day-to-day operations on site, while others are looking for ways to maximize future profitability. By taking the time to really understand the dynamics of a business, like Delta, Volvo CE is not only able to help its customers improve their operations but also improve the way Volvo CE designs and plans its own machines and services to maximize uptime.

    Delta SEMO is operated by Delta Companies Inc, a subsidiary of civil engineering giant Colas, who in turn is part of the Bouygues Group and has more than 50 quarries in North America. Volvo CE’s site assessment program with Colas has run more than three years and covered sites in four subsidiaries across two continents to date.

    “Our collaboration with Colas is proving to be an overwhelming success,” says Craig. “They are world leaders in their industries so have little need for help in how to run their business. Where we do add value is by suggesting small changes to their current operations that will pay dividends for the future.” 

    The entrance sign at Delta SEMO

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    Sep 17, 2018 - 3 days ago

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