CEMEX UK is the first company in the country to own and operate the new Econic tipper, designed by Mercedes-Benz and providing the driver with an unrivalled field of vision helping to protect vulnerable road users.
The new tipper is part of the fleet of 25 trucks run out of CEMEX Angerstein wharf near Charlton, Greater London and transports sand and gravel into the heart of London primarily for production of concrete.
The Econic was trialled for 10 weeks by a number of experienced CEMEX drivers and was found to provide a substantial increase in visibility for the driver and although the drivers feel a little more vulnerable as they are down amongst the traffic, they are fully supportive of the new design.
“This vehicle could totally revolutionize the design of trucks on tomorrow’s urban roads. But more important, with more than 90% extra visibility and operating on busy roads, it could prevent incidents and save lives, particularly those of cyclists,” comments David Hart, Director of Logistics.
He continues “We now need to put this vehicle through its paces and see how it performs over a long time period and integrates with the rest of the fleet. This design may not be the panacea for all haulage requirements but for transporting between sites through urban areas, such as London it’s a significant improvement on current designs.”
CEMEX has worked closely in partnership with Mercedes-Benz to ensure that the vehicle is designed to CEMEX specifications and meets the current CLOCS (Construction Logistics & Cycle Safety) standards and is fitted with the cyclist safety features of the existing CEMEX’s fleet of aggregate tippers, concrete mixers and cement tankers - additional mirrors, essential signage on the back and nearside of the vehicle and proximity Sensor System.
The tipper is fitted with a Wilcox Wilcolite Smooth insulated body and is designed to take a payload of 20 tonnes, the same as a standard tipper. It is a marked step forward as previous high visibility design vehicles have had capacities of around 13 tonnes.