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Sacramento County Finds Kenworth T440s Right Fit For Waste Management Operation

Jun 11, 2011 - 8 years ago

By Supply Post

Fleets that haul waste to landfills often explore ways to increase operational productivity. In California, Sacramento County opted to specify lighter weight trucks with smaller engines instead of purchasing additional, heavier Class 8 trucks with larger powerplants. As a result, the county’s waste management department is using six lightweight, compact Kenworth T440s to deliver refuse to the Kiefer landfill with fewer truck trips.

“We’re able to transport about 500 additional pounds of waste per trip with our lighter Kenworth T440s compared to the last Class 8 trucks we bought,” said Matt Tedrow, waste operations manager for Sacramento County’s Department of Waste Management and Recycling. “Over time, that means fewer trips to the landfill and more productivity for the county.”

Last year, Sacramento County became one of the first customers to purchase the versatile Kenworth T440. The county’s T440s are equipped with Cummins ISL9 engines rated at 380 hp, and driven through Allison automatic transmissions.

Available as a straight truck or tractor in a gross vehicle weight (GVW) ranging from a heavy Class 7 vehicle at 33,000 lbs. up to a light Class 8 truck at 68,000 lbs., the Kenworth T440s feature excellent maneuverability, modern aerodynamic styling, and superior ergonomics.

“The Kenworth T440s were the right size and a perfect fit for Sacramento County’s waste hauler application and budget,” said Chris Lacomb of selling dealer NorCal Kenworth - Sacramento. “It gave them Kenworth quality at a competitive price.”

The T440s were spec’d for stop-and-go driving since the approximately 40-mile roundtrip to the landfill includes an 8-mile stretch with some 25 traffic signals, noted LaComb. The trucks typically make five trips per day, with the new Kenworths often running seven days a week.

According to Tedrow, the county’s drivers like the ride, drive and low-end power of the Kenworth T440s. “The guys who know trucks really got excited when we told them we were getting Kenworths,” recalled Tedrow. “After getting driver feedback from running our initial three T440s, we added tilt steering wheels on our next order of three to accommodate our larger drivers and changed up the gear ratio to get a little better fuel economy. We also reduced the wheelbase by 18 inches, which provides better maneuverability around the landfill.”

The county’s transfer dump operations includes eight other tractors, while 60 other trucks comprise the street-side collection, green waste and co-mingle operation for North Sacramento.

“In the transfer dump operation, we run fully loaded with 80,000 pounds of gross combination weight,” said Tedrow. “We compact waste into 27 to 34-foot bales and fit them in 45-foot moving floor trailers.”

Like most municipal operations, the county works its trucks hard. “We operate our transfer dump tractors eight to 10 years, then analyze their condition. The ones that show their age are put into service as yard goats – shuttling trailers around our facility,” said Tedrow. “We have high hopes that our Kenworth T440s will go beyond the duty cycles we’ve seen in the past.”

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