Out with the old – In with the new

Gatwick Group is pleased to announce the introduction into operational service of a further 2 x brand new specialist rigid crane vehicles.  The 8×2 rear steer and 8×4 Tridem rigid chassis Volvo FM units will replace two of the older units from the fleet and are in addition to the 2 x new Volvo FH units brought into service within the previous year.

Both the FM rigids are equipped with Globetrotter Cabs, D13K engines rated at 460hp and bespoke built truck bodies with fall arrest systems. The 8×2 rear tag chassis has a 6.0m wheelbase and uprated nine tonne front axles to accommodate the rear cab mounted Hiab XS558-EP-6 crane, which will provide an impressive lift capacity of 2,550kg at 16.5m.

The 8×4 tag Tridem FM comes with a 5.2m wheelbase, a nine tonne front axle and a rear bogie capacity of 27 tonnes for its rear chassis mounted Hiab XS548-EP-7 crane, with an equally impressive lift capacity of 2,100kg at 17.5m.  The Tridem also hauls a tandem axle platform drawbar trailer.

We have a compact but very specialist fleet of crane trucks at Gatwick Group and the two new Volvo FM rigids sit about two thirds of the way up in our lifting capacities,” notes Charlie Threapleton, Head of Operations and Special Projects at Gatwick Group.

We deliberately chose the four-axle chassis FMs to strike the best balance of load capacity, platform stability, access and manoeuvrability levels. The Volvo pair are like Swiss Army knives, compact but bristling with well-designed equipment. The higher roof Globetrotter Cabs provide a good degree of comfort and functionality for the drivers and provide very good levels of visibility during driving, meeting industry best practice for Direct Vision Standards for greater safety of vulnerable road users.”

The FM duo were also specified with longevity in mind. “We’re looking to get a full ten years’ front-line service out of these units, both of which represent substantial investments.  A lot of thought and detail was put into the specifications and the platform bodies were bespoke built to meet exacting requirements.” This level of continued investment in high-end, leading-edge technology underlines Swain Group’s commitment to the provision of ‘best in class’ logistical services from its Special Projects Division.