The new eight-wheeler was supplied by north west dealer Roanza Truck & Van, and is now at work in London. It is the first new vehicle of its type to enter service since the operator resolved to specify only low-entry chassis for urban tipping applications.
Like all Econics, Eurovia Contracting’s new truck has the low driving position and panoramic windscreen to provide drivers with a wide field of vision. This is further enhanced by the bus-style folding nearside door, which is glazed to its full height and allows them to make direct eye contact with cyclists or pedestrians at junctions and in traffic, a key advantage in helping each to understand the other’s intentions. These attributes have earned the vehicle Transport for London’s highest, five-star Direct Vision Standard rating.
Eurovia Contracting, whose tippers and tipper-grabs operate in towns and cities nationwide, is certainly convinced of the safety benefits. “Direct Vision is crucial to the safety of our own crews, and of the public with whom we share road space,” said fleet & plant operations manager Chris Forrest. “There are no huge blind spots impeding the view from the wheel of an Econic. Drivers are also much closer to other people on the road, which means they can see so much more than is possible from a traditional, high-riding construction truck.”
He continued: “The TfL Direct Vision standard actively encourages operators working in the capital to choose the safest vehicles. These benefits are universal, though, which is why we’ve chosen to roll out this type of vehicle for all of our urban tipper and tipper-grab operations throughout the entire country.”
Roanza provided driver familiarisation support for the crews who are now using it. “This vehicle is a new concept for us, but with Roanza’s help it has slotted into our operation seamlessly,” said Forrest.
A 3235L ENA model, Eurovia Contracting’s truck is powered by a 7.7-litre six-cylinder engine which produces 260 kW (349bhp), and drives through a 12-speed version of the Mercedes PowerShift 3 automated manual transmission.
Its ENA configuration – single front steer axle, double-drive bogie and rear-steer axle – gives the Econic an advantage in manoeuvrability compared to a standard 8x4 vehicle.
The truck is fitted with a Thompsons steel tipping body and, immediately behind the cab, a Palfinger Epsilon crane, which has a maximum capacity of 3,700 kg and can reach up to 8.2m.
Concluded Forrest: “We’ve been operating Mercedes-Benz trucks for many years, and our fleet includes 20 Econic vacuum tankers that were also supplied by Roanza Truck & Van, and are on gully-emptying duties around the UK.”