The Hartlepool-based operator is now looking forward to the arrival of another two identical 26-tonners, which are due to be delivered in May by Bell Truck and Van. All five will be inspected and maintained under Mercedes-Benz Complete Service Contracts at the Dealer’s Billingham workshop.
The chassis were among the first to leave the Mercedes-Benz production line after Active Brake Assist 5 was added to the Econic’s standard specification towards the end of last year. First seen in the new-generation Actros, this cutting-edge emergency braking aid employs cameras as well as radar.
Active Brake Assist 5 can detect vehicles ahead and stationary objects in its own lane, at speeds of up to 56 mph (90 km/h). Detection of a dangerous situation triggers a three-stage reaction: first, the system warns the driver with visual and audible alerts; then, if the driver fails to react, it applies partial (approximately 50%) braking; finally, if the driver has still not intervened, it initiates maximum braking to bring the truck to a halt, activating the hazard warning lights to alert drivers behind.
The new sensor fusion has dramatically improved response to moving pedestrians at speeds of up to 31 mph (50 km/h). Active Brake Assist 5 is now capable of applying full braking when encountering pedestrians crossing its path, approaching from the front or walking ahead.
The Econic 2630 Ls have rear-steer axles that enhance manoeuvrability by significantly reducing turning circles. Their 7.7-litre in-line six-cylinder engines produce 295bhp and are paired with six-speed automatic Allison gearboxes.
The trucks are fitted with refuse bodies by Dennis Eagle and Terberg Matec UK trade lifts – both manufacturers are part of the Terberg RosRoca Group. Dynamic weighing systems relay data on vehicle loadings in real time to J&B Recycling’s head office.
The electronic architecture required for operation of Active Brake Assist 5 means J&B Recycling’s Econics benefit from Electronic Parking Brakes too. The EPB is applied automatically when the engine is switched off. Also, when the truck is at a standstill, after emergency braking for example, the automatic HOLD function prevents unintended rolling away.
Other optional safety features specified by J&B Recycling include Mercedes-Benz Trucks’ own Blind Spot Camera System and Rearguard Assist.
Operations Director Matt Tyrie commented: “Our fleet replacement programme is designed to avoid service disruption to our clients, while also protecting our business against the risk of spiralling costs. This investment in Mercedes-Benz vehicles will put us in a strong position when lockdown eases and business waste starts to increase, especially in the hospitality sector.”
He continued: “J&B Recycling is committed to investing in the latest technology. We have chosen the Econic because we believe it to be the market’s finest refuse vehicle chassis, one that enjoys an unrivalled reputation for quality and reliability.
“The very high safety specification of these new trucks means they align perfectly with our policy commitments, and their spacious, air-conditioned cabs also provide our staff with an extremely comfortable working environment.”
Tyrie said the valuable data provided by Terberg’s dynamic weighing technology was now being used to drive further efficiencies. “This, coupled with the anticipated reduction in vehicle downtime, will allow us to provide an enhanced service to our customers,” he said.