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WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... A new millennium begins Y2K passes without widespread computer failures Olympic Games in Sydney Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Queen Mother dies

2000 2001 2002

Bali bomb kills 203 people Brazil wins Soccer World Cup Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Boxing Day Tsunami causes widespread devastation First privately funded human spaceflight Janet Jackson suffers ‘wardrobe malfunction’ at Super Bowl

2003 2004

Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Wikipedia goes online

Population of New Zealand exceeds 4 million Saddam Hussein is captured Space Shuttle Columbia destroyed during re-entry killing 7 astronauts Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

2005 2006

Italy wins Soccer World Cup Google purchase YouTube for $1.65m

Slobodan Milosevic arrested over war crimes Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ Five cent coins are dropped from circulation

9/11 Twin Towers are hit by passenger planes

Hurricane Katrina devastates New Orleans Prince Charles marries Camilla Parker Bowles Pope John Paul II dies Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ


Apple introduces the iPhone Bomb kills former Pakistan PM Benazir Bhutto

Barack Obama elected first African American US President Global Financial Crisis Sir Edmund Hillary dies Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

First Canterbury earthquake causes widespread damage Julian Assange, co-founder of WikiLeaks, is arrested Chilean mining accident, remarkably all 33 miners rescued Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ Summer Olympics open in London

2008 2009 2010 2011

Willie Apiata receives the Victoria Cross, the first New Zealander since World War II Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Michael Jackson dies First New Zealand rocket launched into space Swine Flu declared a global pandemic Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

U.S. troops kill Osama bin Laden All Blacks win Rugby World Cup


Kate Middleton marries Prince William Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Mars Rover successfully lands on Mars Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

Malaysian airliner goes missing

2013 2014

Russia is reportedly in control of Crimea ISIS take control of Mosul Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ


Pope Francis first Latin American elected Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, gives birth to a baby boy Nelson Mandela dies at age 95 Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

All Blacks win back-to-back Rugby World Cups Paris terrorist attack

Donald Trump elected US president


Flowing liquid water found on Mars Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ

NZ highest ever Olympic medal tally UK votes for Brexit Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ


Team New Zealand win the America’s Cup Facebook hits 2 billion monthly users

12 Thai boys and their football coach are rescued from a cave


Jacinda Ardern becomes Prime Minister

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Meghan Markle joins the royal family New Zealand picks up 2 medals at the Winter Olympics Isuzu Trucks No.1 in NZ


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October 2019




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New Zealand Trucking magazine is published by Long Haul Publishing Ltd. The contents are copyright and may not be reproduced without the consent of the editor. Unsolicited editorial material may be submitted, but should include a stamped, self-addressed envelope. While every care is taken, no responsibility is accepted for material submitted. Opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of New Zealand Trucking or Long Haul Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved. This magazine is subject to the New Zealand Press Council. Complaints are to be first directed to: with “Press Council Complaint” in the subject line. If unsatisfied, the complaint may be referred to the Press Council, PO Box 10 879, The Terrace, Wellington 6143 or by email at Further details and online complaints at


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“We look forward to bringing Ngāi Tahu values – especially tohungatanga (expertise), whanaungatanga (looking after generations) and kaitiakitanga (stewardship) – to these upcoming projects.” - David Kennedy

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ Industrial developments in the pipeline Ngāi Tahu Property has new industrial developments in the pipeline having bought two blocks of land adjacent to a key section of State Highway 1 on the south-west of Ōtautahi-Christchurch. The sites – totalling about 70 hectares – are in prime locations in Rolleston and Hornby. They have excellent access to the country’s road and rail backbone, and east-west transit links into the Ōtautahi-Christchurch urban area, Lyttleton Port, Christchurch International Airport and Te Tai Poutini-West Coast. Ngāi Tahu Property chief executive David Kennedy says Te Waipounamu – the South Island boasts a growing and valuable range of industries from manufacturing to agricultural services and logistics. Whether those firms target lucrative export markets or operate in the fast-turn-around world of ‘last-mile’ logistics, physical connectivity is key. “Online and omni-channel retailing is one growth area we are watching,” Kennedy says. “Firms increasingly need the ability to receive and rapidly distribute products to diverse customers, from retailers or direct to endconsumers.” “Delivering successful solutions for the industrial sector is in our DNA. This is a return to a sector in which Ngāi Tahu Property has a depth of experience and knowledge,” Kennedy says. The first site is in the popular Rolleston industrial area and registration of interest is available now. The other block, adjacent to Hornby, should have titles by mid-2021. Ngāi Tahu Property has been fielding enquiries since acquiring the land. Development manager Blair Brown is expecting a surge of interest now that the first stage planning has been finalised.

“We encourage people to come to us early with their needs to secure the right space for their business.” Ngāi Tahu Property South Island development general manager Scott McCulloch says market analysis indicated demand for high-quality industrial developments with easy access to State Highway 1. Potential owners and tenants are responding well to Ngāi Tahu Property’s willingness to provide customisable development opportunities and flexible tenure options. “Currently there is an unmet demand for freehold land in this market and Ngāi Tahu Property is happy provide vacant lots or turn-key options as required. Or, as an iwi-owned, intergenerational investor, we can also offer secure design-buildlease options if tenancy is preferable.” “We will have a solution for your business, whether that is freight and logistics, warehousing, food processing, agricultural services, construction or manufacturing.” As with all its developments, Ngāi Tahu Property will also bring the values of its owners, the people of Ngāi Tahu, to both sites, McCulloch says. “As an iwi-owned firm, we have an intergenerational and sustainability focus at the core of all our projects.”

ROLLESTON INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT Address: 151 Hoskyns Road, Rolleston, Selwyn District Total area: 32 hectares • Easy access to the South Island’s major transportation and freight links/networks State Highway network • Southern Motorway (completing mid-2020) • Two inland ports • KiwiRail network Customisable options available: • Freehold land for sale • Design, build, lease options • Turn-key building options

Contact: Blair Brown, Development Manager, Ngāi Tahu Property email:


People of great character


here’s plenty to write about in terms of things that are wrong, troublesome or need fixing. There’s as much content to be written trying to predict the mindnumbingly complex future that lay just ahead of us all. To some extent the mainstream news media is geared toward issues, and that often results in us having a subliminal, dire picture of the social landscape. After all, our base wiring is essentially aimed at delivering a ‘threat, or no threat?’ response. If something’s bellowing ‘Threat!’ at us, we’ll arm the ramparts so to speak. So, I want to spend this editorial talking about the calibre of people we come across in our travels, and as such, the industry’s greatest PR tool. In the course of compiling our various media we interact with road transport people. They come with hugely diverse upbringings, lifestyles, and vocational backgrounds. Yet all we ever see are genuine, well raised, kind, people attempting to make their way through life, on the one hand with as little trouble as possible and, on the other, wanting to cause as little trouble as possible. The crime, the theft, those who make the headlines, form a tiny subset in the vast fabric of humanity. I was going to say that 99% of the people we encounter are only too happy to help us in whatever way they can. But then I tried to think who would fit into the 1% left and I couldn’t think of anyone. I’m sure there’ll be a day when we strike resistance. I mean let’s face it, you can’t get on with everyone. So, the point is: the public desperately needs to know who you all are, and you are the greatest tool in the industry’s kit for telling them. I can’t think of one truck driver or company owner I’ve met who would not willingly engage with either a disgruntled adult or wide-eyed kid looking for a dynamic world

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New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

8/02/2012 11:02:47 a.m.

of adventure, skill, responsibility, and opportunity. Huge respect must go to Phil Collinson, the owner of the main test truck this month, who understands all of this implicitly. The nature of our industry means we’re unable to interact enough on a daily basis with the average person. The figure behind the window, who waved and smiled to someone walking up the street in Blenheim this morning, could be in Taupo tonight, never to be seen again. The public’s perception of that person will be formed by a largely agenda-driven media. Yet, if they thought about it, the act of smiling and waving told them more about who that person was than some junior reporter looking for sensation could. Truck shows are great tools for engagement, but we must engage when they’re on. I’m frustrated constantly that the fantastically warm and willing people of trucking are not known as well as they should be. My own character is largely the result of mentors and role models from the trucks of the 80s and 90s who gave so much, imparting their skills, their work ethics, and disciplines, with never a hint of reluctance. From what we see today the underlying character of those truly devoted to our industry is unchanged. You are people of great character. You are the people the public entrust with everything from the food in their cupboard to their most treasured possession. It’s all of our jobs to remind them of that at every opportunity.

Dave McCoid Editor




No tolling for Transmission Gully motorway


otorists will be pleased to hear the NZ Transport Agency has decided that the Transmission Gully motorway will not be tolled. NZTA director of regional relationships Emma Speight said they considered whether tolling was appropriate, but an assessment indicated that the net potential revenue over the lifetime of the toll was unlikely to make a meaningful contribution to the cost of the road. “In addition, our assessment showed that tolling the road would likely result in more drivers choosing to use the coastal route (the current State Highway 1), which would compromise the safety, environmental and access benefits that the new road will deliver for drivers as well as for communities along the coastal route.” Speight said the NZTA was also asked to consider whether tolling could be used as a measure to reduce congestion in the region by managing demand, but modelling, in this instance, indicated that tolling Transmission Gully would be ineffective in encouraging people to choose other modes of transport and would more likely encourage people to take their cars on the coastal route.

Northland rail investment a massive boost to region


n September, the Government, through the Provincial Growth Fund, announced a $94.8 million investment to maintain and improve the North Auckland Line rail between Swanson and Whangarei. The funding will see about 54km of the 181km track replaced or upgraded; tens of thousands of sleepers replaced, tens of thousands of cubic metres of ballast added; aging bridges replaced; overdue maintenance work on tunnels carried out; ditches cleared and embankments stabilised. Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones said the investment would also help improve freight


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services on the line and have direct benefits for Northland’s economy. “The maintenance work will make the line more resilient to weather events and freight services more timely and reliable. “Not only does it set the right conditions for KiwiRail to grow its freight business, wherever possible KiwiRail will be using Northland-based contractors to carry out work. It will look to Northland first if they recruit more track staff, as well as sourcing materials in Northland.” Looking for a better job?



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Patchwork no solution to vital corridor


oad Transport Forum chief executive Nick Leggett spoke at a business after 5 event in Levin recently. Leggett called his discussion ‘The Missing Link’, saying there had been a concentrated infrastructure investment in the lower North Island with Transmission Gully, the Kapiti Expressway, and Peka Peka to Otaki, but now there was a gap in Horowhenua. He said with the expected growth in the region, a strong case existed for addressing the safety and resilience of this section of state highway. “We have, as an industry, an alignment to the interests and the issues that you’re facing with transport and I wanted to talk about where we see the Otaki to north of Levin road, where it fits in the greater scheme of things for the lower North Island.” He said instead of breaking up Wellington to Palmerston North into separate roading projects, it should be treated as one network. “So many goods and people travel all the way along it and even if you hop off along the way, you need a quality, safe road while you’re doing that, and that’s what we’re demanding as an industry. We’ve got an interest because we want freight to be able to make its way from great primary production – the Horowhenua is the lower North Island’s food bowl – but also for trucks coming down from Auckland and other parts of the country, and from the south via the ferry.” About 80 percent of freight is delivered within a region and Leggett said that wasn’t contestable by rail. “For Levin and the wider Horowhenua to send and receive goods, the fact is most of it will be done on a truck because trucking is about timesensitive goods.” Leggett said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said in her Budget speech that ‘if you want to talk about safety on our roads, get freight off it, get it onto rail’. “There is this big focus on rail, that rail can be the solution to our problems. They want to move away from roads, but with the significant population


New Zealand Trucking

growth that New Zealand has had and a growing economy over a significant period of time, there’s more traffic on the road, there’s more freight, and you have to move it, so you have to expand your infrastructure to continue to deal with that. “We’re pretty positive about rail as a mode that can meet some of the freight task. Rail is important because over a certain distance it’s more than competitive with other forms of transport, and it’s really good at transporting bulk. It’s not road versus rail versus public transport; we need a really good mix of all three, and what we’re seeing is a departure from that. Horowhenua is a community that is suffering, and local economies and safety will suffer, potentially, if we don’t deal with it.” Leggett said the Otaki to north of Levin section of SH1 was a high-risk road and the region deserved better. “What we have is an ideological position of the government on transport, and I don’t have a problem with that, because the government was elected and they have a right to pursue the policies that they believe in. My issue is about the lack of evidence and the anti-road fixation, and that’s what Levin has been caught in. “There is only one roading project on the horizon and that is the replacement of the Manawatu Gorge and that was because of a pre-election promise. But 12 roading projects across the country have been halted – and I would say at this point, probably worse than halted. “The debate has to be about balance, it has to be about what gives us the greatest economic and people payback in terms of transport across New Zealand. What moves New Zealand and continues to power our economy.” Leggett put up graphics showing New Zealand’s 4000km railway network, followed by one showing the 93,000km of roads. “You see that contrast there; you’re not comparing apples with apples. Roads will always deliver the greatest proportion of freight because they can deliver door-to-door, and because it

October 2019

Nick Leggett

gets to places just in time.” He said the RTF had no problem with money being invested in upgrading rail assets as they had been underinvested in for some time, but investment in roading infrastructure was also needed. “In the government’s Government Policy Statement they moved away from productivity to having safety as their key goal. We’re at one with that; who can argue with safety? The aim is to reduce the road toll by 40 percent over 10 years, which we’re supportive of, but cutting investment in highways is not the way to fulfil those goals. “We’ve also seen their focus areas and they’re obsessed with speed. When you slow down a substandard road you don’t necessarily make it safer, but you certainly slow down the economy in the area. “Let’s invest in our roads; let’s not see speed as being the panacea for everything, because it’s not. Speed is a factor in about 25 percent of accidents. What we know as drivers is that it’s inattention. It’s cellphones and things like that that are causing the big issues. The government doesn’t seem to be interested in grappling with the drugdriving issue either. It’s quite scary when the CVST, who deal with heavy vehicles, tell you that trucking operators have more ability to test their staff than most police do when dealing with drugs at the roadside. That’s a real worry.” Leggett raised a smile when he said Transport Minister Phil Twyford had said there had been an overinvestment in roads and motorways for decades in this country, saying he would let everyone who used the roads decide whether they agreed with that or not.


Interislander Kaitaki ferry approaches Allports Island.

Interislander upgrade will improve freight capacity


his year’s Budget saw the Government allocate $35 million for procurement of two new, rail-enabled ferries that will replace Interislander’s aging Aratere, Kaitaki, and Kaiarahi ferries. KiwiRail’s project to replace its aging Interislander ferry fleet with two new rail-enabled ferries has entered a new phase with the appointment of naval architects. KiwiRail chief operating officer – capital projects and asset

development, David Gordon, says Danish naval architects, OSK ShipTech AS, will develop the design of the two new ships to meet KiwiRail’s requirements well into the future. The two new ferries will have a greater capacity for rail and road freight, as well as passengers, than the existing three-ship fleet. KiwiRail has also appointed French-based BRS Group as its ship broker to help in the international search for potential suppliers of the vessels.


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8/02/2012 11:02:47 a.m.

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October 2019



NZ Transport Agency board ‘refreshed and refocused’


ransport Minister Phil Twyford has announced the appointment of five new members to the NZ Transport Agency board. Twyford said they would work under the strong leadership of chair Sir Brian Roche – the only member of the previous board to remain – to deliver the government’s transformative agenda along with a stronger regulatory focus. “Our government has rebalanced transport spending to tackle the long-term issues of boosting regional economic growth, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, easing traffic congestion, and preventing deaths and injuries on our roads. “The new board members bring the right mix of skills to deliver our transformative agenda and refocus the agency on regulating the land transport system.” Twyford said the review of the NZTA’s regulatory functions would be released soon, and he expected the board to implement the direction signalled from that review and to make sure vehicles are safe on the road. “We’re getting the agency back on track after it was failing to regulate under the last government,” he said. The appointments will start 23 September 2019.


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New Zealand Trucking

October 2019



WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ The appointments are: • Catherine Taylor who brings deep regulatory expertise, including knowledge of regulatory roles and experience being a regulator. She will also provide risk management expertise and familiarity with the Crown operating environment. • Ken Rintoul whose background in engineering and construction will bring good operational knowledge and practical procurement experience. • Cassandra Crowley brings great strength in financial performance and understanding regulation. She will also provide additional strength in risk and assurance to the board. • Patrick Reynolds brings a strong knowledge of the integration of transport into urban development and a well-developed understanding of transport systems. • Victoria Carter brings knowledge of innovative transport modes and approaches, including experience with car sharing. She also has local government experience and experience leading organisational change. At the time of publishing there remain two vacancies on the NZTA board.

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Push hard, don’t stop


campaign to raise awareness about lifethreatening severe bleeding after an accident was launched in April. Stopping the Bleed New Zealand follows in the footsteps of other successful initiatives in the US and Australia. The campaign draws attention to the speed at which unconsciousness or death can occur – as little as three minutes if a major artery is severed – and helping people understand how to help. Pharmaco Emergency Care product and clinical standards manager Pip Cotterell said it is highly likely people will come across a serious road crash at some point, so raising awareness about knowing how to provide immediate first aid is incredibly important. Supporting the launch was St John medical director Dr Tony Smith, who said there had been accidents where lives could have been saved if the bleeding had been controlled until emergency services arrived. “In a nutshell, the key is putting full body-weight pressure on the wound to stem the blood flow and doing this for as long as possible – that’s why we say ‘Push hard, don’t stop’.”


Farmers should be the ones tagging their animals, not truck drivers


armers should be the ones responsible for correctly tagging their animals to safeguard New Zealand’s biosecurity, not truck drivers, said Road Transport Forum chief executive Nick Leggett in a recent address to the Primary Production Select Committee at Parliament. “What truck drivers are being asked to do in the new Bill to strengthen the National Animal Identification and Tracing (NAIT) legislation is well beyond their mandate as livestock transporters,” said Leggett. The Bill proposes that truck drivers would be issued $400 fines for transporting untagged animals. Leggett says the RTF accepts that animals must be traced to ensure their lifetime movements can be monitored in the event of any disease outbreaks, but there have been longstanding problems with the NAIT system that cannot be fixed by punishing the truck drivers. The RTF wants livestock transporters removed from the penalty schedule in this Bill. “Truck drivers have no control over the NAIT tagging system, as getting those animals tagged is solely the

responsibility of the farmers who raise them,” said Leggett. “No untagged livestock should ever be presented for transport if the NAIT system is working properly.” Leggett also pointed out logistical impracticalities. “Visually checking for tags on livestock is an impossibility given it is sometimes dark when animals are loaded, the number of animals and the speed with which they are loaded, and the method used to load and unload. “Livestock transporters are prepared to help improve the NAIT system. They are just not prepared to shoulder this blame and cost when clearly the people in control of the animals – the person sending them on the transport and the person receiving them at the other end – have the primary responsibilities,” he said.

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Daimler Trucks North America is testing automated trucks in Virginia, US.

Daimler’s automated trucks hit the streets


aimler Trucks and Torc Robotics are actively developing and testing automated trucks with SAE Level 4 intent technology on public roads. The initial routes are on highways in southwest Virginia, US, where Torc is headquartered. Torc is now part of the newly established Autonomous Technology Group of Daimler Trucks. The deployment on public roads takes place after months of extensive testing and safety validation on a closed-loop track. All automated runs require both an engineer overseeing the system and a highly trained safety driver certified by Daimler Trucks and Torc.

Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) will focus on further evolving automated driving technology and vehicle integration for heavy-duty trucks. The DTNA team is working on a truck chassis perfectly suited for highly automated driving, particularly the redundancy of systems needed to provide reliability and safety. Within the Autonomous Technology Group, DTNA is also building an infrastructure required for the operational testing of initial application cases. This consists of a main control centre and logistics hubs. These hubs are located along high-density freight corridors, where many customers operate, and within close proximity of interstates and highways.

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IRU sets future direction for road transport


he International Road Transport Union has published a manifesto that calls on international organisations, governments and industry stakeholders to safeguard the role of road transport in driving economic prosperity. It calls on global economies to seize opportunities within the industry, by highlighting areas where intervention is required across its three core pillars: prosperity, people and environment. “Today, trade remains the driving force behind international prosperity and demand for road transport is only increasing. Our job – and the purpose of our new manifesto – is to bring together governments, public authorities and businesses at the global, national and local levels to ensure everyone in the industry has a voice and works together for mutual benefit and progression,” says IRU secretary general, Umberto de Pretto. The industry accounts for 5.7% of employment worldwide but faces myriad challenges the IRU recommends be addressed. IRU is calling on the industry to speed up digitalisation; encouraging

transport companies to go paperless, urging international governments to increase the use of technology enabled freight exchanges and systems. It is encouraging governments to revise transport policies with modal cooperation; to set appropriate rules for professional driver requirements; and to define a harmonised framework for better data access and governance. IRU is calling on international governments to improve driver safety and security, and to create a more positive image and better working environment. It’s developed a roadmap on driver shortage, calling for improved funding for safe parking areas and driver training alongside a managed transition to autonomous vehicles. Already transport operators are taking significant leaps in the use of more sustainable transport alternatives, driving greener mobility and logistics. Yet there is still some way to go before the long-distance, heavy-duty commercial road transport industry fully adopts alternative fuels and alternative powertrain solutions – such as electric and hydrogen fuel-cell technology.

Cummins acquires Hydrogenics


ummins Inc. has entered into an agreement to acquire, through a wholly owned subsidiary, all the issued and outstanding shares of fuelcell systems provider Hydrogenics Corporation for US$15 per share in cash, other than shares already owned by The Hydrogen Company, representing an enterprise value of approximately US$290 million. “We are excited that Cummins has reached an agreement with Hydrogenics to welcome the employees and innovations of one of the world’s leading fuel cell and hydrogen generation equipment providers to our company,” said


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Cummins chairman and CEO Tom Linebarger. “We look forward to partnering closely with the Hydrogenics team in the coming weeks as we work toward closing the transaction. Upon closing, we will share more details about the acquisition and our strategy to offer a broad portfolio of power solutions to meet our customers’ needs.” As a part of the transaction, The Hydrogen Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of L’Air Liquide, S.A., and Hydrogenics’ current largest equity shareholder, will maintain its ownership into Hydrogenics. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2019.

October 2019

IRU is advocating efforts to accelerate market uptake of high capacity vehicles and promote research into new approaches to commercial vehicle access in urban areas.

WABCO becomes anchor partner to Silicon Valley’s Plug and Play WABCO Holdings Inc. has signed a three-year agreement to be an anchor partner with Plug and Play, a global innovation platform leader. Under the agreement, WABCO will gain access to Plug and Play’s extensive global partnership network that includes many of the best start-ups, market disruptors and industry leaders, enabling the co-creation of advanced new solutions and joint innovation initiatives. The collaboration will also leverage Plug and Play’s innovation capabilities to support the advancement of WABCO’s Autonomous, Connected and Electric (ACE) vehicle and transport ecosystem technologies. This is a key focus as the company looks to rapidly grow its Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud-based technology capabilities to drive differentiated benefits for OEMs, commercial vehicle fleets and transporters, globally. “We continue to invest significantly in expanding WABCO’s digital offerings to include cloud-based IoT technologies, which, combined with advanced connectivity of vehicles and the ecosystem around them, will enable transport operators to make their operations even leaner, greener and safer,” says Christian Brenneke, WABCO chief technology officer. 


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Yesterday’s beauty Story by Dave McCoid

Photos and video by Craig McCauley, Dave McCoid, Carl and Izaak Kirkbeck

At face value it’s a K200 Kenworth with an uber cool retro grille, and although there’s more to the machine in terms of specs and tweaks, are its staggering looks conveying a far deeper message?


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alking towards Eden Haulage Fleet No 12 the excitement is elevated. Is it the thought of embarking on a rounder from Invercargill to Christchurch and home via the MacKenzie Country and Central Otago? Is it the knowledge you’re going to spend the next couple of days in the cab of a truck dressed in the slick, Invercargill-based outfit’s livery? Or is it this truck…brand new yet some kind of freakish flashback to a time when trucking was pure; pure in its intent to deliver what was needed to those waiting, pure in the ethos of those who gave up day-to-day life at home to fulfil a commitment and scratch an itch that only trucking can pacify, and pure in its sense of camaraderie and adventure – a time when truckers waved, and stopped for others in need of help. The truth was, it was all of those things, and when the immaculately presented Blair Chambers strode around the corner of the big Kenny’s cab and said, “Right, let’s go load and get outta here,” we couldn’t get to the steps and grab handles quick enough. “She’s a sweet one tonight,” said Blair as he slipped the gear lever into second and eased the clutch out. A grumble came from deep in ‘Angus Spud’s’ bowels, and truck, trolley, and inhabitants rolled slowly toward the Bond Street gate. “Full load, one drop. Boom.” It’s roughly a 20-kilometre run out to the loading point at local icon Pyper’s Produce, where a full load of vegetables will go on for hungry tums all over the South Island. Our task was to deliver them to a distribution hub in Christchurch before taking the required 10-hour layover, and then reloading product for delivery in Queenstown the following day.

Posture is everything

A golden rule of health and vitality, if posture’s compromised then a visit to the infirmary will transpire at some point. One of the first things that has an impact on the senses looking across the yard at ‘Angus S’ is his impeccable stance. Low and level with not a hint of the German Shepherd-like lazylooking arse end that can sometimes define a Kenworth’s stature. ‘Wow’ factor right there and then. “We specced this one with the PRIMAAX arse end and deep drop front axles,” said Eden Haulage owner Phil

Collinson. “It’s bloody low, but looks much better, and safer too. It’s more stable in the back end. I’ve got Southpac sourcing a bumper lift kit so Blair can flick a switch and lift it clear if he’s somewhere tricky. We’ve pushed so many boundaries. It’s not the easiest machine in the fleet to operate, but it is the new standard build for us.” Loading took no time at all with Blair and Eden Haulage stalwart Darryl Millar on the forks. Phil sorted the admin and soon we pulled out onto Lochiel-Branxholme Road (yep, that’s the name) with just under 28 tonne of vegan vitality in the rear

The more you look… A K200 flat roof sleeper with a cool retro grille, but don’t stop there. Keep looking and among the many subtle touches, two other dominant throwback features soon become apparent…but let’s hand over to Phil. “I was hoping a Legend series cabover may have been announced next, but no, there’s no word about that currently so I thought I’d do something myself. Obviously, you have to start with a flat roof sleeper as the base machine. “I wasn’t a huge fan of the bow-tie grille on the K200 at the start anyway, but you get used to it even though I still much prefer the old shape. The top of the grille is pretty much original, with some subtle cuts and selective add-ons. Willie Malcom, bloody clever man that he is, then fabricated the balance from scratch. I could have got a K100E grille for it, but it looked rubbish. Just didn’t look right on the newer,


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bigger cab. It needed its own take on an old style. “Then there was the step infill, now that is something I dislike about the K200, that bloody gaping chasm of a step. It’s too much. Who ever uses the back half? I guess if you have a sleeper door, but no, it looks bloody awful. So, we filled that in so it’s now an improved version of the old steps. What they should have been. So yeah, kept the truck’s K200 characteristics but altered the aesthetics a little toward the early 90s. “The roof kit. I thought it would simply be a case of sourcing a old Rudkin-Wiley roof kit and maybe giving it a birthday and altering to suit, but no; do you think we could find one, anywhere? Not on your life. So, again, it was back to Willie and get him to attack a new roof kit with a sabresaw, so it has the centre bit that hinges up. Pretty cool, eh?” Yes Phil. Extremely.


Something old, something new… hang on, something new something old? We give up.

compartments. The X15 got stuck in and Blair put the first of countless white centrelines beneath Angus’ wheels as the big gold and green K’dub set course for the Garden City – how ironic is that, LOL. “It’s a completely different machine from the other three,” said Blair. “It’s just on rails, eh. There’s no roll or sway, it steers impeccably, and the lock is better too with the drop axle set. I’ve only been in it a few weeks but already if I drive one of the others the difference is noticeable instantly. The other guys who have driven this pick it up straight away also.

“It took a bit to get me out of the Freighty, eh. That thing is just a freak. There’s nothing in the fleet that gets near it. But no, I’m used to this now. She’s pretty bloody good.” Stuck record time. The X15 is such a beautiful noise beneath the cab, you could listen to it all night…and we pretty much did, well, a good half of it anyway. We come back again to the realisation that there is a marked difference in the richness of sound from the 15-litre and over set, and the truck’s robust 72dB interior noise level – which peaked at 78dB at one point with the fan, jakes, and all manner of action afoot – was in no

The three dominating aspects of the retro look and feel are the Rudkin-Wiley adaptions to the air kit, the grille, and the step infills. There are touches all around the truck however, like the black mud flaps behind the drive wheels.

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WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... way annoying. In fact, where’s that volume control to give us another notch? Picking up on that point though, there were more sound waves with us in the cab than say Corey Duggan’s 2.8m condominium on wheels, but that’s probably due to the reduced cavity in which they have to disperse.

Mr Collinson I presume?

A great take on a famous line for meeting an explorer of any genre, and Phil has certainly honed his exploratory credentials with this set-up. He set out to build a unit able to deliver a lot, literally. As is so often the case, weight only comes into play for a couple of customers, and to that end tonight’s load had Angus close to his 50 tonne max. The rest of the debtors ledger is all about volume, and so the truck is set up to maximise cubic capacity within the bounds of needing chillers, and having a shade more respect for the person at the wheel than say Leyland James did when he presented the world with his ‘Freightlining’ manifestations of ‘maximised cube’ in the 50s. Angus can place 36 Chep on the deck, with a chiller hanging off the front of the trailer; suffice to say IVS is on the mark. The truck body is a clear 7.5m internal and the step deck Roadmaster trailer on 19.5” rims is 11.8m. In order to optimise the truck cavity, the deck is as low as is possible with redistributed cross members, notched wheel arches, and a front cross member cut, allowing the exhaust pipe to pass through. “It’s bloody tight,” said Phil. “The buckles have to be placed properly otherwise a wheel can ping them off.” Blair seemed at ease with his big gold buddy, however. “It’s just a case of thinking first and acting second. I’ve been to most

of our regulars and not had a problem. I’ll just have to be a little cautious at new places. It’s things like pushing the dolly back under if you have to jack-knife and stuff like that. She’ll be right. I’m sure I’ll end up somewhere with sweat on the brow,” he laughed. Right in the midst of the build the nuisance of nostalgia reared its head slightly. Normally, to get the body jammed hard up to the cab the air intakes route down through the front wall, and then out and into the motor. At the top of the cab air kit notches are cut out to allow the intakes to poke out into clean air. That’s normally. But when you’ve already cut and tucked the air kit to give it the Rudkin-Wiley look, you’re in a bit of a pickle. That meant concaving the front wall of the body to allow the narrow barrelled stock truck style air intakes to be fitted instead. Problem there is, those narrow barrelled sets are made for the Aerodyne, flaring out at the top as the Aerodyne vista section slopes in toward the roof – the flat roof cab and air kit are straight up and down, no slope. Damn! So, a special set of extra-long narrow barrelled intakes had to be made by Mike Christie Sheetmetals in Palmerston North, who Phil said were absolute heroes. So, it’s all done. Easy! No, not really. ‘Malcolm the magician’ (Willie that is), had to strip the back of the cab out to fit the bracket system that holds the new intakes. Now we’re done. Was it all worth it? Look at the jaws of the onlookers, people, look at the jaws. That’ll tell you. As for the customers, there’s already a problem with some requesting ‘the new truck’ on account of its extra appetite. “It’s not the lightest at 22,160kg tare [13,180kg/8980kg] but there are big chillers, insulated curtains, the PRIMAAX which is heavier, and BPW welded-seat shockless suspension in the

Super Dad Blair Chambers must have been well raised. A big man with a big aura and energy, who approaches on foot at breakneck pace in strident, meaningful steps full of intent. He has you thinking ‘Hell! Something’s happened, I’m done for here’, only to find at the last second a beaming smile, character-filled handshake, backed by an engaging, friendly, interested, immaculately presented bloke. He’s happy as anything to have you along, if a little shy about the limelight Angus Spud has thrust upon him. Life lesson number 538 – never judge a stampede by its approach. Blair’s the same age as his boss (44), and like Phil wasn’t born into chrome wheels and stacks, but he’s also every bit the trucker’s trucker. Born and raised in Wellington, he’s the son of a builder but was fixated by the tip trucks over the back fence carting to local civil projects. Like many truckers, school wasn’t a love affair and once free he worked at Coca-Cola before signing on with The Moving Company in Wellington and getting into the furniture transport business. Blair started right at ground level with packing and unpacking, loading and unloading, progressing to local container deliveries off the wharf, and eventually on to destinations farther afield. The first real truck was a 4x2 Nissan CP with a 9-speed, and Blair pretty much covered every corner of our fair nation. “She was a beast, the old Nissan. Man, we loaded that thing up. She’d only do 80km/h but she’d do it all day long. I remember getting down to first gear one time on the Peg


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Leg on Arthurs Pass and thinking ‘Don’t anything stop me... please’ She was just hanging on. “The worst two places you can ever go with furniture are Wellington and Dunedin. Every time you get one of them you think ‘Oh, no’. I remember one place in Wellington having 330 steps between the truck and the house.” At that point Blair gave us a piece of pure gold. If there were an award for best trucker’s gem each year, Blair would have to be a contender with this… “Once we had a piano to get down from the road 220 steps to the house. When we got it there, I said to the owner ‘Why couldn’t you have played the spoons!’” Twelve years ago he’d had enough of furniture, and went to work for Colin and Diane McAuley in Masterton driving a Foden Alpha, completing three returns a day from Masterton to Wellington carting containers. “Three months in Colin said to me ‘Do you like bees?’ I said, ‘Never thought about it’. ‘Good,’ he said, ‘you’re off to Nelson’.” That set the next eight or so years in motion and saw Blair delivering and relocating beehives nationwide, allowing him to visit the remotest of nooks and crannies in the country, the ones even furniture deliveries had missed. There’d be few truckers as well travelled to the unknown places as Blair. “The places you got on the bee work, some of the scenery you saw. Places other people will never see. Just incredible.


Lovely posture, Mr Angus.

Blair Chambers. Every bit the trucker’s trucker.

We had satellite phones so we could always have comms, eh?” The bulk of the McAuley’s work was on an MAN TGX.540, a truck Blair rates highly in terms of comfort. “It went fine too. Nothing wrong with it. “The McAuleys were bloody great people to work for. It was a family firm and the door was always open.”

In 2014 Blair and wife Nicky took a big step relocating to Southland with sons Chase and Cole. “We just thought it was a good, safe place to raise the boys. It’s a long way from family but it’s going well. The boys are just truck mad. Can’t get enough of them. I get updates on who’s gone past the school [Edendale Primary] and all the details,” laughs Blair. “Phil’s great to them too. He makes them feel part of the firm if they’re there in the weekends polishing the wheels or helping out. As far as they’re concerned there’s only McAuley’s and Eden Haulage!” Blair got the drive at Eden Haulage when the family arrived in Southland on the back of a solid reference from fellow McAuley’s workmate Jeremy Hodson. “If you had fleet of Blair Chambers you’d be a happy owner,” said Phil. “Just gets in and does it, and looks after himself.” But like everything in life it takes two to tango. Blair said the culture at Eden goes a long way to making it a pretty happy place. “We’ve got a bloody good crew at the moment,” said Blair. “Everyone gets on, there’s no pecking order. If you didn’t know who Phil was he’d be hard to spot…the one on the phone to his ear all the time I guess, yep, that’d be it. He never stops,” Blair laughs. “There’s an expectation to look after the gear but it’s a trucker’s trucking company, and that’s embraced. That’s the kind of people we want.”

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WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... Grounded in success Like many of us, Phil Collinson’s truck obsession wasn’t handed down. Phil’s family owns Southland Sheetmetal Ltd and his roots certainly lay in guillotines and spot welds, not diesel and double-clutching. But the gene was there from day dot, ignited by the family home in Ryal Bush neighbouring one of New Zealand’s most iconic rural transport liveries, Ryal Bush Transport. The young irrepressible Collinson was captivated by the burgundy and cream fleet and he quickly struck up a relationship with owners, the McDougall family. The pinnacle truck for him was the International Eagle 4870, driven by Peter McDougall. Countless hours were spent in the passenger seat of the truck, a model of which still proudly sits on the bar leaner in the Collinson man-cave. Phil left James Hargest College in Invercargill and worked in the family business until the day his HT licence and a job with family customer Calder Stewart Ltd could be secured. “I used Calder Stewart’s Mazda T3500 Titan. I didn’t have enough weight on, so grabbed a concrete block for the trailer I was towing, and we were all go. The cop basically got me to drive around the corner and pick up his dry-cleaning, and back to the station. Done! “That Calder Stewart job was great. I’d do one or two runs to Queenstown a week, one to Te Anau, and one to Milton, delivering roofing, flashings etc.” From the seat of the Mazda Phil started to get a hankering for linehaul, and aspired to drive one of McDowell Freight’s Western Star 4864F Heritage tractors pulling 5-axle B-train units. Of course, times were different back then and you needed experience and track record to get on the big gear, so he headed for familiar ground, a place where he was known and trusted, Ryal Bush Transport. The grand plan was to make the break to linehaul from there. “That was the plan, but…I just never left really. Well, I did once continually working Sundays and abuse got too much,” he laughs. Phil started out on a 1980 ex Kapuka Transport B Series ERF lift-out-sider – the quintessential southland rural combo. You name it, a ‘lift-out’ can do it…and he did. Bulk tip work, silage, produce, and stock, all under the watchful eye and tough hand of the legendary Wayne ‘Ox’ McEwan. “Much of the ethos and philosophy we run this business on has its roots back then,” said Phil. One of his regular gigs was carting bins of veges at Pyper’s Produce; full bins from paddock to packhouse, and empties back out. While at the packhouse he’d often see his dream, right there in front of him. “I’d come into the packhouse and see ‘Nugget’ Anderson in Phoenix Freight’s Scania 143 loading for Auckland. A 5-axle B-train, cab decked out with 6-stack CD player; I had a old AM wireless. The two jobs were a world apart.” Phil progressed and made it to an EC series ERF stock truck, another much-loved wagon in his career. But change wasn’t far away. “Ryal Bush had one owner-driver and there had been talk for a while that opportunities would be opening up for another couple of us. One day we were summoned to the depot. We’d heard rumours we’d bought McDowall Transport Rural and the floodgates would open up on a lot more work. I thought ‘this was it. I’m going to own my own truck’.”

Spotting the owner at Eden Haulage is a tough gig, especially when there’s no phone in view. Phil Collinson (left) helps Darryl Millar fasten the curtains on Angus’ trolley.

What transpired couldn’t be further from that. The meeting was to tell the crew McDougalls had sold out to Bill Richardson, and since Bill didn’t subscribe to the owner-driver model, any dreams of Phil owning and operating his own truck vaporised right there and then. In fact, the one ownerdriver who was there was given notice. “They said it would be better, newer gear, and there’d be opportunities within the company. I have to say it wasn’t bad. I got a brand-new Cummins powered Mack Quantum, the only new truck I’d ever had, but you know how it is when you’ve come from a certain culture, it’s never going to be the same,” he says forlornly. In 2005, with just under 10 years of service and only 20,000km on the Quantum’s dial, Phil handed in his notice. At the time Brenics Transport Ltd had bought a couple of Western Star 7564S tractors and Phil thought there was a chance one may have been coming south on the Pypers’ work. Phil registered an interest with Brenics owner Gary Johnstone, but then news filtered through that Nelson Pyper quashed the idea as he wanted to support locally based Southland businesses. “Nelson’s a real old-school guy. He’ll still turn up and drive the tractors from dusk until dawn, and usually it’s the least flashy machine. Just a toiler, and a bloody good bloke to boot.” Ryal Bush was an opportunity lost, and now it seemed doors were shut no matter which way he turned. But then an Continued on page 32


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Angus Spud certainly has an appetite for pleasing the customer base. Eden Haulage is old school team spirit at its best. While Darryl Millar loads the front bit, Blair loaded the back and somewhere Sean Doyle was taking care of layer boards and straps.

trailer. We could go beyond 50MAX but with the rules the way they are at the moment, the economics just aren’t there. It’s bloody crazy,” said Phil.

A comfortable passage

Mechanically speaking there’s nothing unfamiliar here. If the Hyundai was all-new, the Kenworth was very much the favourite sweatshirt, with Euro 5 Cummins X15 power and vitals set at 410kW (580hp) and 2508Nm (1850lb/ft). There’s an 18-speed Roadranger RTLO18918B manual transmission, and Meritor RT46-160GP rear axles at 4.1:1 with cross-locks on the rear thread. Front axles are Meritor MFS66-124 Drop Axles at 13.2 tonne for the pair, on Kenworth load share taper leaf springs and shock absorbers. Rearward is, as we said, Hendrickson PRIMAAX EX 462 at 21,000kg. Brakes on the truck are drum, and disc on the trailer, all with ABS/EBS, and obviously stability control to meet HPMV requirements. The truck has Drag Torque (DTC), meaning it won’t lock wheels under auxiliary braking, and Automatic Traction Control (ATC). With the above spec matched to Roadmaster bodies, BPW axles and suspension on the trailer, Carrier fridges, and Tauranga Canvas curtains, there’s no question that in Kiwi trucking parlance Phil’s intention was for the combination to ooze reliability from the moment he scratched its DNA onto a piece of paper. It’s just what a small fleet working on the tight uncompromising timelines of the food distribution game needs. Talking uptime and maintenance, Phil relies on Transport Repairs in Invercargill for his maintenance work. “They’re our main service provider. Part-owner John Fowler was the head mechanic at Ryal Bush Transport for years and pretty much taught me everything mechanically I’ve ever learnt. The same things I still teach drivers today. Best service providers I could ever ask for.” As it was ‘A Spud’ decided to show us all just how good they are by turning on his oil pressure warning light as we were heading out to Pyper’s to load. John Fowler’s son Jason, also a part-owner, wheeled in the gate in a flash and was on the case only to find that 21st century trucking delight, a faulty sensor, was the culprit. “One really good thing about these [Kenworth] is they build in three independent circuits measuring oil pressure. So we’re good,” said Jason. “I have to say I’ve not seen this sensor fault before. You’re good to go!” So we did.

There’s not a lot of room for ‘possums’.

Angus is averaging 1.85kpl (5.22mpg) in his short 20,000km life to date. Phil’s expecting that to improve to just above 2.00kpl (5.64mpg) if the truck’s to follow his stablemates. “Once it’s done 200,000km and any quirks are ironed out I’ll open it up,” said Phil. “That’s what I’ve done with the rest.”

If only they knew

Rolling north the arteries of the nation were frenetic with the life preserving cells that are the trucks, bringing all manner of product to those who would wake up in a few hours expecting to find their privileged existence intact for another day. Up the Saddle Hill just south of ‘Dunners’ the Kenworth held the 5th high split at 1700rpm and 30km/h, but Lookout Point just – and we mean ‘just’ – had Blair grabbing top of the

A trucker in his happy place. Blair Chambers cranks out some ‘k’s.

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WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... Continued from page 30

epiphany: “Why not hock myself to the eyeballs,” he laughs. “So I did!” A proposal to buy and dedicate a truck to the Pyper’s work was made, a negotiation undertaken, a handshake exchanged. Eden Haulage – named after Phil’s eldest daughter – was born. “Pyper’s. Just great people.” The result of the successful negotiation was Craig McCauley’s New Zealand Trucking magazine Top Truck for April 2007, a brand new International Eagle 9800i sleeper cab tractor with a Cummins ISX 525, 18-speed Roadranger transmission, and Meritor diffs. The truck towed a secondhand 5-axle B-train with new paint and curtains. “It had to be an International. I’ve always had a soft spot for them, still do. I went for a new truck in the end for reliability, but didn’t go nuts and buy new right through. You have to draw the line. I looked at Euros but they were just too heavy. “That truck is still here, it’s done 1.8 milion kilometres and been bullet-proof; the occasional air-assist clutch ram, and electric window motor. The gearbox and diffs have never been touched. But that’s been all three Internationals. Their reliability is the sign of a well put together truck, and they’ve given no problems. Comer and his company make a great product. Far better put together than some other US brands.” Eden Haulage grew rapidly on the back of an insatiable appetite for work and an overarching desire to serve the customer. Invercargill to Dunedin work quickly expanded to Christchurch, and the single International soon became three with the addition of a day cab 8x4 and then a sleeper cab 8x4. An engine supply issue at Intertruck right at a time when a new wagon was needed opened the door for the first Freightliner Argosy, a Series 60 EGR unit with an AMT. “I didn’t want a Detroit, I didn’t want EGR, and I didn’t want an AMT. I got all three. It was a nightmare. It dropped three valves before 600,000km and drank water from the get-go.” That truck was eventually repowered with a Cummins Gen 2 Signature and ‘retransmissioned’. After a patchy start in life, it’s the truck Blair came out of for the Kenworth. “The freak,” as Blair puts it. Another Argosy joined the fleet, this time a C16 Cat powered jobbie ex SCS Transport. Ironically it was a truck Phil had briefly considered in order to get the business started. And then in 2014, the first Kenworth. “Adam McIntosh had sold me the last two Internationals and had been keen to get a Kenworth in here. He’s a top man. I didn’t want an EGR and he said the e5 was in the final development phase, with the treatment unit placement on the K200 being figured out. I went to Aussie, had a look, we did a deal, and since then we’ve added three more. They’ve been good trucks; they have their quirks, you have to load them right to get them to handle properly, they can roll around


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a bit if the load’s not placed right, up until this one that is. I wouldn’t say they’re necessarily better than the Inters but you can’t ignore resale, not that we’ve had too much of that yet. Everything I’ve ever bought bar one International is still here. “Cummins have been good motors to us. They’re either oil burners out of the box or they’re not. I’ve had a couple use oil and a couple that have never used oil. The key to Cummins for us is Eric Carswell. Eric’s a good man who stands by his product.” Fourteen years into the journey, at 44 years old Phil’s enthusiasm and energy for linehaul trucking is as fresh as it was when a wide-eyed Mazda Titan driver looked on at McDowall’s ‘Evening Star’ rolling north away from our southern metropolis on SH1. Sure, he’s traversed the sobering realities of driving and business, but his passion for the industry hasn’t waned in the least, seeking out true truckers to operate his gear. Collinson has a 24/7 desire to satisfy the needs of those paying the invoices, and an unwavering belief in trucking’s ability to sculpt good people from the earliest age. “I’m adamant that everyone needs to be involved if they’re keen. How else do you get the young people fired up. That’s how we became passionate, drivers handing down their knowledge. It’s fundamental. “I had some guy here a while back doing an audit and he said, ‘I assume there’s no passengers?’ “Absolutely there are,’ I said. ‘The families are more than welcome to go for rides when they can. How else do guys working long hours spend time with their kids? How else do they pass on the skills and foster the love of trucks?’ “If it’s managed properly there’s no reason why you can’t have the young ones here polishing a wheel or bumper or something with Dad. Just being part of it all. Again, we did when we were young! The situation ‘we’ve’ got ourselves into is bloody ridiculous.” Phil takes immense pride in his gear and achievements, yet his hospitality, and absolutely genuine appreciation for staff, their families, and anyone taking an interest in his business, is a true sign of the man’s humility. As Blair said, spotting Phil if you don’t know him is a tough thing to do. Currently the fleet sits at 12: five Kenworths, (there’s a W Model), two Internationals, two Freightliners, two DAFs, and a UD 4x2 for local fetching and delivering. It too looks every bit the part an Eden truck should. “That’s my lot really. I’ve got no desire to grow something big, ungainly, and unprofitable, with staff for Africa and endless worries. I’d rather service the customers we have to the absolute best I can with the best gear, best people, and best culture.” Phil and partner Sarah live just out of Invercargill with four girls between them, Eden, Lia, Madison, and Neve.


First run complete. Blair whips the load off in Christchurch before the obligatory 10-hour layover.

bottom box. Give him a few months of limbering-up and the big golden fella will likely crack that one without the need for contemplating the big button on the shifter. The X15’s approach to life is well versed, with the sweet spot at 1600rpm where power and torque flash lights to each other as they pass. At that point the latter is still sitting on its peak number. Blair’s a mid-range man when it comes to driving style, meaning he’s neither a revver nor a ‘lugger’, although we gave the truck a good down-low workout to see if we could crest the Lookout Point. What Blair’s style does is allow lots of flexibility to move the stick around at will, something he does with significant aplomb. This will be another million-kilometre box of cogs in his hands. It’s a style that makes for relaxed motoring and is natural on the ear, particularly for those of our generation (50-plus). We grew up in the middle of the first wave of down-speed engines and as much as driving all day at 1850rpm and above is a bit ‘wincey’ at times, we can’t honestly say that being around pistons that journey in a pedestrian fashion to TDC and have time for a cuppa before heading back down the tube is always the most comfortable seat of the pants sensation either. In our day Cat were the emperors of the low-rev kingdom…and really, nothing today sounds as comfortable in the tachometer’s basement as they did, although Rex Stephen’s MAN would be close. And yes, not withstanding this truck had to have one, another truck with a manual gear lever. They will get fewer and fewer, but let’s all enjoy the sunset on a time when man had

mastery over his machine, and be thankful we knew how great that felt. “Cost and reliability are the main reasons for sticking with the manual thing. See that thing there,” said Phil pointing to the original Eagle. “It’s done 1.8m kilometres and the gearbox hasn’t been touched. Yep, it’s getting harder to find the people and the day will probably come when I’ll have to consider the other option, but for now it’s still a ‘tick’ in the ‘manual’ box.” The Cummins’ 335kW (450hp) mid-range hold-back on the Jacobs is a clever thing and we witness once again its prowess at just nipping things in the bud before scaring the Moreporks three valleys away with a set of Jakes in the night at 2100rpm, howling down the slopes of Pigeon Flat or the Kilmog. Blair’s style means as soon as he’s off the throttle that retardation number is right there, so you get a sense of instant response. Brian Aitcheson in the ProStar back in June wrote the book ‘The bill-payer’s guide to mid-range retardation’ and Blair’s certainly a kindred spirit. Let the energy go before the crest,

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WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... all that good stuff. None of the descents we encountered saw the tachometer over 1950rpm; all the work was done early with only a few dabs on the anchors to deter disorder in the downward dynamic.

Snug as a bug…in a bug

As a rule we go to lengths on the interior; after all the driver lives there, but this is really a well-written-about shed. It’s a polarising place and still the victim of unfounded ‘blah’. The ride in a sleeper cab rigid K200 is the equal of most and better than many. The handling characteristics are on point if you’re into the US style, flat through the corners ‘speak to me directly oh truck’, sort of a gig. Because it has the load share front end it has the characteristic floaty/correction thing going on every now and then, but we know all about that. The cab’s sitting on


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air and shocks to the rear and the K’dub’s cantilever and shock set-up in the front. The finish in ox-blood diamond patterned vinyl, heavy rubbers, and probably the best ‘tuff-plastic’ we encounter is bang on when it comes to serviceability. Appeal-wise it’s entirely up to the individual. Again, you couldn’t get further from the Hyundai or a big Euro if you tried, so it’s purely preference. In terms of fit, Phil’s truck came without the hieroglyphics scribed into the aluminium panels on the rear of the cupboard doors like Corey’s truck did, which was a plus for the nonarchaeologists among us. Generally, it’s hard to fault, although whatever’s down the path in terms of cab evolution may want to address a bit of dating now in terms of tidy installation in areas like the the dash panels in front of the passenger for

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ Angus passes some tourists, more than likely oblivious to the fact half their food needs for the following week just rolled on by.

example. We know Kenworth are all about chunky and robust, but some aspects of the fit and finish are a bit Hulk in theme nowadays, when they should be Ironman. The cab has the pull-out fridge and drawer under the bunk and a tele in the sleeper. Sorry, hopeless romance sets in at this point and being a flat roof sleeper means the fridge probably wasn’t needed, as the inside is so ‘cool’ anyway. Yes, you can’t stand up fully, but it’s a testament to the K200’s designers that you get a bloody sight closer than you’d expect with the base design’s flat floor and generous headroom. “It hasn’t bothered me one bit,” said Blair. “There’s heaps of space for our work and if we want to stay in a motel we can. No issue.” Storage isn’t really affected either. After all, there’s not a plethora of cupboards in the vista section of an Aerodyne, and Blair’s 2.3m hut had cupboards all along the back wall and under the passenger seat, as well as the under-bunk, caddies in and around the dash, and external lockers. It’s a pity there’s not a pull-out drawer under the big central console. Seat coverings are Heritage leather with the bug on the headrest, and that ties in magnificently with the thematic intent of the machine. The dash and cockpit are again familiar and one we approve of greatly. A two-piece binnacle and wrap in a single sweep. The Kenworth binnacle is a magnificent big structure and dominates the cockpit, opposite from the old K100E’s equally magnificent dash – arguably the coolest ever – with the huge wrap section. Gauges are everywhere and most of the switches, along with climate management, fridge management, and wireless, are on the wrap. Air bag controls, brake valves and lights are on the lower left and right of the binnacle section. The magic all-comers’ wand for dip, wipe, wash, and indicators is on the left, and the hand control for the brakes is in on the right. The tiller is the familiar Kenworth SmartWheel, which is probably the biggest step away from the Heritage theme. In that context, not having an infotainment system does play right into the old school imagery, even though it’s now seriously dating the cab in other ways.

Golden times

A strong coffee at Timaru saw us through the endless tracts of the South Canterbury Plains, which the Kenworth devoured with ease. It was a Kenworth at its absolute best, on cruise, a deep continuous rumble, a brace of illuminated gauges in your New Zealand Trucking

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Blair and Angus approaching Queenstown just on dusk.

lower periphery, and headlights spearing into the pitch black under the gentle rise and fall of the windscreen’s bottom line. Find us a better Friday night. Into Christchurch we dropped the load and planned the morning’s rendezvous point. You couldn’t have wished for a better first day of spring to follow, film, and photograph a golden truck in the Central South Island high country. Angus headed for the MacKenzie basin and Lindis Pass, loaded with the vitals required to Phil and keep a burgeoning tourist population in youngest Queenstown satisfied. daughter As for the truck, well, you can’t really Neve. fault a specification that’s stood the test of time for decades, proven in Phil’s first truck that is still breasting up in season to do its bit for the company. If we’re scoring on cool factor there’s probably not a scale that does ‘Angus Spud’ justice, although his payload credentials mean this is no ‘presence at a price’ build. Looking forward, this machine will arguably be the most efficient in the fleet on an ROI basis. So much nowadays is simply preference and price, and preference is normally


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determined at an early age. What that means for the future is anybody’s guess. Few jobs can deliver what trucking can, mastery of machine, significant responsibility, the daily representation of a firm to the customer, autonomy in decision making, freedom, days like Saturday 1 September 2019. Phil Collinson knows it, and knows that if you let the next generation take part during the first 15 years, the following four-plus decades will take care of themselves. In a way this truck serves to remind us of a time when an industry less persecuted had a chance to sell itself to the next wave of followers. The greatest marketing tool trucking’s ever had are the trucks themselves. Maybe, just maybe, ‘Angus Spud’ can be the poster child of a revolution. A truck that reflects a golden age of social acceptance and self-worth. A time when parents were happy to let their kids look on driving as a noble act, allowing them to walk through the back gate to the trucks next door, meet the great people who were there, and dream big dreams. 


The classic K200 work space. The trim installation around the passenger compartment would benefit from any future cab revamp. The private confines of a flat roof sleeper certainly have an exclusive feel. In that context the flat roof and the Aerodyne have swapped places.

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Kenworth K200 8X4 2.3M FLAT ROOF Tare:

13,180kg (working)


Drum with EBS



Auxiliary braking:

Jacobs engine brake




1 x 570 litre



DEF tank:

170 litre


Cummins X15


Superchrome alloy wheels on truck and trailer


15 litre



433kW (580hp)

Front: 275/70 R22.5 R294 Bridgestone Rear: 275/70 R22.5 M749 Bridgestone


2508Nm (1850lb/ft)


Euro 5 (SCR)

Transmission: Clutch: Front axle:

Dual Meritor MFS66-124 Drop Axles

Front axle rating:

13,200kg (Pair)

Front suspension:

Taper leaf and shock absorbers – Load Share

Rear axle:

Meritor RT46-160GP at 4.1:1; diff locks cross lock on rear

Rear axle rating:


Rear suspension:

Hendrickson PRIMAAX EX 462 – 21,000kg




Additional safety:

Drag Torque Control (DTC), Automatic Traction Control (ATC), FUPS front bumper

RTLO18918B manual 18-speed

Cab exterior:

2.3m Flat roof, aerodynamic mirrors

Spicer Easy Pedal

Cab interior:

Ox-blood interior. AM/FM/CD player with Bluetooth. Full suspension Heritage driver’s seat. Climate control, heated electric mirrors. Fridge.


Gold gauge bezels, stainless steel drop visor, grille bars, custom air intake system (Mike Christie Sheetmetals). Customised retro grille, step infills, air kit alterations, air intake installation (Malcolm Cab Solutions). Stainless steel panelling and lights (Chris Stanley). Painted fuel tanks, LED headlights.

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October 2019



New Zealand Agent for

Total Transport Engineers LP, Mount Maunganui, Ph: 07 575 4754, E-mail:

Patented Operating System.



a winning bet Story by Carl Kirkbeck Photos and video by Carl and Izaak Kirkbeck

Working outside of VDAM can be risky; however safe bets can be achieved with research, collaboration, and cooperation.


step outside the constraints of the NZ Transport Agency VDAM (Vehicle Dimensions and Mass) rule when designing transport equipment presents a risky gamble. Craig Gordon, proprietor of Total Transport Engineers LP of Mount Maunganui, was prepared to think outside the square. With the assistance of a couple of likeminded and proactive individuals he has constructed a trailer set that exceeds current design parameters yet improves on-road performance, creating a feasible operating solution for his client, and lowering the impact of trucks in the local community. Turn the clock back just over three years and a regular coffee and chat between Craig Gordon and good mate the late Robbie Kitney brought about a discussion regarding proposed vehicle concepts, dimension parameters, and volumes. Robbie’s work at the time included port logistics in Napier, and he


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posed the question: “can you design and build a unit legally capable of transporting two 40-foot containers, or alternatively four 20-footers?” Craig’s immediate response was “No”, under the parameters of VDAM rules. Within VDAM the allowance for overall length of vehicle combination is 23.0m and only a handful of exemptions existed, covering special vehicles working in special circumstances. Robbie explained to Craig his earlier conversations with Steve Young (business development manager for Napier Port at the time). Steve had described to Robbie how the port was operating a fleet of small basic skeletal units as a ‘conveyer system’ transporting empty containers from the main sea port to their two inland container storage parks. The round trip of approximately 11km traverses both commercial and residential areas. Steve expressed his wish to Robbie to find a way to legally double the productivity of each individual trip. There were significant potential benefits: • A reduction in basic operational costs for this necessary task. • A halving of truck and trailer numbers on the road. • A reduction in daily trip numbers along this designated route.


A bird’s-eye view as the 29m skeletal unit demonstrates its capabilities.

Left: The B-train tracks through the somewhat tricky route out from Napier Port without even looking like endangering a kerb, flower, or rim for that matter. Right: Container handling at Napier P HOT O: T T E

Port happens in twos. Loading trucks only capable of an odd number of containers is inefficient.

• Minimising the impact of container traffic through the residential areas. • A reduction in associated noise along the route. Craig agreed to investigate possibilities and attempt to find a solution. About three months after the initial meeting Robbie phoned Craig to see how he was going. Craig mentioned he had looked into the application and had an idea to share. Robbie’s response was, “Great. Meet me at 10am next Thursday and come ready!” The following week the two men met, with Steve in attendance also. Craig presented them with information and photos documenting TTE’s latest three-TEU container skeletal build for a client. As tidy as this was, the concept did not ‘tick all the boxes’ Steve was looking for. Steve reiterated the solution must be able to handle four 20-footers at a time or alternatively two 40-footers. The reasoning behind this was simple; the container handling machines at the port handle boxes in multiples of two – either a pair of 20s or a pair of 40s. This immediately ruled out the three-TEU skeletal concept and required a clean sheet of paper.

Craig left this meeting fully focused on researching the brief. It was agreed that this research and any potential developments arising from it would, in the interim, remain confidential between the interested parties. Craig’s research took him back to a promotional video he’d seen a year or so earlier of a self-steering system developed by an Australian company, Trackaxle Ltd of Shepparton, Victoria. This was a defining moment. Discussions with Trackaxle sales representative Kerry Atley were followed by Craig preparing some initial concept drawings. Wheels were in motion. Over the next six months Craig’s research and development included a series of conceptual drawings, meetings with Trackaxle in Australia, and numerous phone calls and emails. The end result was a vehicle combination he was confident would be both fit for purpose and provide Steve with the operating solution he was searching for. While visiting TTE’s premises, the late Geoff Walsh of Transport Technology Ltd, TTE’s certifying engineer managing the company’s design assessments and certifications of new vehicle builds, was able to review the initial concept and draft layout drawings. “Geoff was both impressed and surprised,” remembers Craig.

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Napier Port’s Robert Phipps (left), and Warren Young in front of the completed unit now working in their operation.

“I think he was a little shocked to be fair, but he was great to bounce ideas off. With his wit and humour, he was second to none.” It was time to call a second meeting with Robbie and Steve to present Craig’s proposed layout. A 6x4 tractor unit towing a 29-metre, 5-axle B-train with four steered axles able to meet the four 20- or two 40-foot container brief. On paper it looked perfect and offered solutions to all of the operating parameters. The response from Steve was immediate. “Let’s get this under way.” Armed with this information and with the assistance of the technical team at Trackaxle, Craig approached John de Pont


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of TERNZ Transport Research. John agreed to undertake a computer modelling assessment based on Craig’s working drawings using the Trackaxle steering system. The outcome of this computer study provided a positive outcome on paper, which gave Craig the confidence to approach NZTA with his proposal. Craig contacted Don Hutchinson, principal engineer – heavy vehicles at NZTA. Craig met with Don in his Wellington office to submit his proposal. “Don was both keenly interested in the overall concept and a great help,” said Craig. “He never seemed fazed at all.” Several weeks of emails and phone calls followed between


An onlooker observing the 29m combination when parked would take some convincing of its manoeuvrability. Seeing would soon be believing however.

Don and Craig, with checks and re-checks of submitted data, plus confirmation of various inputs. This culminated in TTE being granted a feasibility permit to build a trial unit. For Craig and the team there was a feeling of great elation in gaining approval to build a trial unit after two years of discussion, research, and feasibility concepts. However, this success was bittersweet because of the death of both Robbie and Geoff during the extended research and development process. “The two of them played instrumental parts in the combination’s conception and design. It’s a real shame they are not here to celebrate this success with us,” said Craig.

When great minds converge. A customer need that will bring commercial and social benefits, meets innovative engineering and regulators.

During construction of the trailer set at the TTE workshops, Warren Young took over the reins at Napier Port following the resignation of Steve. As the trailers neared completion, Napier Port workshop manager Robert Phipps visited TTE’s workshop to observe progress. The tractor unit and first trailer were parked in a tight wash bay. Craig jumped into the cab to swing the combination into open space to allow Robert the opportunity to look over the project. Robert was standing beside TTE’s Chris Savage and said to him, “There is no way that will come out of there in one swing”. When it successfully made the manoeuvre in one sweep, Robert was astounded and instantly saw the merits of what had been built for their application. The build completed, it was time to test theory and maths and see how the end result measured up. The unit was taken to a large closed off area and put through its paces. Both Trackaxle personnel and John de Pont were on hand to assist, measure, and observe. Aerial footage recorded the unit traversing through a designated set of measured turns and manoeuvres. After a couple of minor tweaks the results were beyond impressive; the combination displayed follow characteristics superior to that of a conventional 19-metre quad-axle semi, itself the best part of 10 metres shorter than the B-train combination. It was the delivery run from Mount Maunganui to Napier Port where the unit proved its real mettle. Craig drove the combination to Napier himself, with son Samuel and brother Nigel following directly behind and videoing the unit’s progress. Footage taken from their vehicle shows how the combination follows the tractor unit’s path with a near perfect track match. “Nigel commented to me how the video did not show much as the trailers never crossed the white line,” Craig said. “The New Zealand Trucking

October 2019


WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... Robbie Kitney (left) and Geoff Walsh (right) were heavily involved in the project, but sadly both men passed away before



project completion.

video footage clearly displayed how the Trackaxle combination followed the prime mover as calculated. It is not like a normal unit where you swing out wide for a corner. With this rig you drive your lane, and it will follow.” The unit differs from most combinations in that during turning procedures the vehicle’s steering bogies allow the axles to follow the curvature of the set path. There is no skipping, shuddering, or grabbing of tyres on the tarmac. To an observer

the unit glides through the curves. Currently the unit remains subject to an NZTA specified trial over the designated travel route. Its operation is now fully in the hands of Napier Port where it is undergoing evaluation, with early results looking highly promising. The trailer combination’s ease of operation and greatly improved productivity already has smiles forming on the many faces involved with its development. 

When the towing gets tough


Towing gear that’s up to the job... •

Double Row Ballrace Turntables 16 - 30t

Pintle Hooks 76mm 50t

3” Fully Oscillating 5th Wheels 260kN

50mm Tow Couplings 285kN





C/w 4.8m Alloy Body Full of Fuel and DEF fluid!!






WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... The top of the mountain Story by Dave McCoid • Photos as credited

Last month we discussed why the Freightliner world down under changed and what living in the DTNA teepee will mean. This month we look more at what’s coming.


reightliner has a recent history when it comes to naming trucks after their region of birth. Columbia got its name from the famous river flowing through Portland to the Pacific, and Cascadia the Cascade Range of mountains running down through the Pacific North West. Looking back 12 years, it was mildly prophetic naming the new truck Cascadia. If the moot were ‘Name the USA’s most successful class 8 truck ever’, you’d be in a strong position arguing for the Cascadia. It’s been the omnipotent number one now for well over half a decade, thanks largely to one man’s vision.

The long game


When Cascadia arrived in 2007, Freightliner had about 18% of the US class 8 market. Today, Richard Howard, senior vice president for sales and marketing Daimler Truck and Bus

North America (DTNA), will tell you back then the morale, particularly in aftersales and the dealership network, was a bit average. When Martin Daum arrived in the big seat to take the role of executive vice president, president and CEO of DTNA LLC in 2009, he set a goal for undisputed market leadership. But it wasn’t the goal itself that necessarily got the wheels spinning; it was his action plan that would bring it to life. He demanded a constant innovation cycle delivering a 5% improvement in TCO (total cost of ownership) every two years. That’ll get any R&D and testing boffin out of bed in the morning! It’s worth remembering Daum is now global boss of Daimler Truck and Bus. This year he announced to the world that Daimler was ceasing investment in platooning and would have a Level 4 autonomous vehicle commercially available in the US within a decade. So, if you’re a member of the ‘talk is cheap but it costs money to buy whiskey’ fraternity, it would appear he’s your man. Anyway, where did it all end up? We know that well. Cascadia today holds 37.4% of the class 8 market (largely at Navistar’s expense), and Freightliner commands over 40% if you chuck in the other bits and pieces and the Star from the West. The closest challenger is Volvo jammed in and around the 18-ish mark with Pete and Ken. In terms of numbers, unit sales were 190,000 total (HD and MD), in 2018, and



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If you’re happily driving your Cascadia down the road in years to come, spare a thought for poor old Mr Purple and what he went through for you.

by combustible crustaceans? Being the US, the pursuit of aerodynamics and fuel frugality is obsessive, and in Detroit the down-speeding phenomenon is being investigated to the extreme, with experimental rear axles at sub 2.0:1 final drives. Roger Nielsen is the top man in the US now and the base goal’s also been tweaked a little. “Undisputed market leadership in every dimension.” You mean the afterlife? No, he means connectivity, aftersales, safety, driveability, economy, socially… you name it. Remember, the KPI is total cost of ownership, and Ron Hall, VP equipment and fuel at CR England, a 6500-strong fleet based out of Salt Lake City in Utah, will tell you things like rear-end crashes have dried up since Active Brake Assist arrived. It’s not just fuel and bits.


New Generation Cascadia, which arrived in Sept 16, has sold 150,000 vehicles so far. “Our most successful product launch ever,” says Howard. “We set out at the start with a vision for the long game. That’s how we are with every market we enter.” Ninety-five percent of Cascadias are today powered by Detroit (it would be higher if they could build more engines), 77% have the DT-12 AMT, 62% are on proprietary front axles, and 35% rear. DTNA in 2019 is a well-disciplined, goalhungry, rock concert. Of course 5% improvement in TCO ain’t easy, and it’s now pushing them into alternative propulsion – there are class 8 eCascadias (electric) in real world field trials, and of course it now has a mandate to explore L4 autonomy. But what about the here now and drivetrains still powered



The undisputed king in the US class 8 market. But we’re getting the snazzy 2020 job (above left ), prepped for us, and in terms of our mates in the West Island, it’ll probably look more like the one on the right.

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October 2019




Top: Brace for impact. Above:‘Lock, unlock, lock, unlock, lock, unlock’… set them going and come back weeks later.

Feared by trucks

Of course, if you read last month’s Part 1, you’ll know the really big news in all this is we’re now inside the DTNA teepee and no longer the annoying rural cousin. That means the golden child [Cascadia] will come as a result of DTNA’s full R&D and product development might. And what is it we are getting exactly? Not the Cascadia the US has had since 2016, that’s for sure. We’re getting the 2020 version that won the Transport Technology award at CES in Las Vegas this January, and the first Cascadia developed for right-hand drive markets. Product Validation Engineering, or ‘PVE’ as Al Pearson, chief engineer product validation calls it, is DTNA’s fancy term for testing. “We are the voice of the critical customer,” he says. Development and PVE for the 28 trucks involved in the creation of ‘down under Cascadia’ has taken place in four locations pretty much. Two LH-drive units were put to work in Australia in the middle of last year, and they were later joined by an RH-drive unit working in a customer business. Five were taken to PVE facilities at the company HQ in Swan Island, Oregon and bashed, shaken, beaten, and tested to within an inch of their lives. One poor truck went to Madras, high in the desert three hours inland from Oregon – it’s the place all trucks fear – and topping it off, 19 units have been built up as demos, and for marketing by Daimler Truck and Bus Australia Pacific. Basically, this is how development and testing goes. Once all the modelling and engineering are done, Daimler takes the result and conducts its own testing both in specialist facilities and with its own road fleet that runs 24/7. The road fleet is configured in such a way via weight, hours of operation, speed, and gradient, so they wear at a rate three times faster than normal over the road vehicle. As well as their own data


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October 2019

gathering, they amass data from real world customers in every corner of the market and in every operation – that now includes us. That data is then analysed and when compared with their own testing data, a picture of what a 90th percentile customer truck looks like emerges. Interestingly, the Australian RH-drive programme revealed a 90th percentile truck deep into the heavy vocational end of the US metrics. In fact, a truck that needed to be ‘heartier’ than a US heavy haul spec. “It’s great information,” said Daniel Whitehead, president and CEO Daimler Australia. “It’s what we’ve been saying for years, that we’re different. And there it is, in cold hard numbers.” What it meant for the poor purple RH-drive Cascadia that drew the Madras proving ground straw doesn’t bear thinking about. At the end of a US$18 million upgrade Madras is now a state-of-the-art truck test facility with multiple tracks, both high and low speed, and equal in terms of left and right loading on the vehicle. There are hills, and interestingly intersections, to allow for autonomous vehicle testing. Discrete tests are gone too, meaning, the judder section followed by the cobble section and so on. Huge plates set into the ground and grouted together form one carriageway and are actually 3D images of real roads. No two plates are the same, the idea being to work stresses into the truck continually. “It’s the cumulative effect we want,” said Sean McKenna, Madras test track manager. In lay terms you could say that instead of banging their thumb once with a hammer, they wind the vice up slowly until… well, you know. Gradient/descent testing is done using the cumulative agony also. It takes between three and six months to prep a truck with all the transducers, accelerometers, and wizardry required to undertake testing, and once ready it embarks on a programme using a concoction of the facility’s apparatus,

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ came close?’ We achieved it in the first year with this product.” In case you’re wondering, in terms of development, the front under­run bumpers required some add­ons, and from the field testing it’s been about fuel tank straps and battery mounts.

Resetting the bar

This Cascadia has wind.

For all that, Cascadia’s real party trick is likely to be the case it proposes on the desks of fleet purchasers in particular, and insurers. Yes, they’ll be slippery, economical, and, according to Freightliner Asia/Pacific director Stephen Downes, “deliver the lowest emissions in the market. Better than Euro 6”. Yes, there’ll be a 13­litre, and a big banger. But more importantly, they’ll be the first US bonneted truck to come with proprietary Level 2 autonomy and all the safety and connectivity you’d expect from the swankiest Euro. Detroit Assurance 5.0 means Adaptive Cruise, Active Brake Assist – 5, Side Guard Assist, Lane Departure warning, and possibly Lane Keep Assist, although according to Downes the jury’s in recess on that last one given the delights of antipodean carriageways. The trucks will be the most connected US truck ever seen, whether that’s driver monitoring, voice, third party logistics applications, or its virtual technician. As we found with the new Fuso Shogun, there’s a Daimler familiarity about the dash and surrounds once you’re inside, and space galore, particularly around the driver. In terms of smoothness, the brief blats we’ve had at Las Vegas in January, and then in Mr Purple at Madras, demonstrate demonstrably that a challenge has most certainly been issued to the market when considering a safe, smooth, comfortable, bonneted, US truck.

Don’t open that window envelope!

Left: Napolyon Isikbay, director vehicle durability and reliability at DTNA looks at a cab grab handle that has some explaining to do. A ‘million miles’ in a highly corrosive environment is no excuse. Right: Daniel Whitehead, president and CEO Daimler Australia. A big bill to pay but even bigger ambitions in terms of market share.

correlating to the destination market. In terms of weight the trucks are loaded in line with the correlation; Mr Purple was running 100,000lb (45 tonne). “We load the tractor and first trailer here to max GCM of the lowest rated part,” said McKenna. “We only need that first trailer load to induce the required forces on the tractor.” Full load tests for gradability and tuning the AMT are done at a test facility in Germany, with weights of up 300,000lb (136 tonne). So does it all work? Napolyon Isikbay, director vehicle dura­ bility and reliability, said, “With new Cascadia we wanted a fault rate of 1.1 per vehicle per year. Management were upset and said ‘how are you going to get there, original Cascadia never

“We’ll be in the hole to the tune of $100 million when we launch. That’s what it’s cost to get this truck here to everyone’s satisfaction,” said Whitehead. “If you ever needed proof that DTNA is committed long term, that’s it. And believe me, we’re aiming for significant market share. We know it’s not the same here, but we’ve got something special to bring to market. We can now offer what the others can’t.” The challenge will be to communicate to the market what it is this truck represents. Yes, its performance, economy, safety, and connectivity are impressive, but it’s the restructuring of the DTNA relationship that houses the big gains, both now and in two years’ time. In that context Cascadia’s arrival is great news for non­customers as well. Lethargy on the part of competitors will mean market share issues for sure.

And the answer to the big question is, “Yes”

Of course, only we know what the big question is. ‘Will there be an 8x4 Cascadia?’ New Zealand Trucking put the question to Downes. “Yes there will. Not right off the bat, but yes. New Zealand is an important market to us, and we’re absolutely committed to developing the 8x4.” New Zealand probably is an important market for sure when you have a bill like theirs; every sale counts. The timeliness of the 8x4’s evolution will no doubt be helped by the weird and wonderful world of PBS potential in Australia too. But one thing we do fervently hope is this: that they learn from their Benz brethren and when it does come, it’s not short on ‘assurance’ compared with its 6x4 stablemate. 

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019



Night and day!

Story and photos by Dave McCoid

Whether you’re describing the operation itself or the driver’s comparison between this month’s Top Truck and its predecessor, the answer is the same.


t’s a bucket list thing for me. To have my truck in a trucking mag. I’ve been excited about this all week,” laughs Conway ‘Con’ Keilman. The 51-year-old glass-half-full trucker was Kapiti born and raised, but today he’s happy to call the Waikato town of Taupiri home, where he lives in a lovely house surrounded by trees and a paddock with wife Karla, and sons Dante and Kaleb. Having driven trucks since before he legally could, Con reckons he’s reached the pinnacle with his latest ride, the Scania R620 recently added to the one-make Haz Haulage fleet of Mainfreight contactors Nigel and Fiona Mouat. Haz Haulage says it all really, and like its workmates the big Swede is decked out in Chemcouriers livery with the famous Mouat Rotties emblazoned on its air deflector kit. The truck is double-shifted, with Con delivering the specialist DG freight into the Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Taupo, or Northland areas by day, and when big yellow dips under the horizon, shift partner Chris Raina usually tackles some metro transfers before heading for Rotorua. “We’ve been doing this for 27-odd years,” said Nigel. “The Scanias began when the Mitsubishi I was running right back at the start did two motors in 12 months and we thought ‘this can’t go on’. We were in it for the long term, so I took the plunge and bought the first new Scania on a full maintenance plan in 2000. Only the Euros were doing those plans then, and I wanted peace of mind. That’s it really. Been with them ever since. They’re beautiful machines to operate, the drivers love them.” The NTG R620 replaced an existing R620 and Con said there’s no comparison between the trucks. “Don’t get me wrong for a moment, the old girl is a beautiful


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October 2019

Another Mouat Scania. Long may it continue!

The high(line) life. The big Scania’s environs and driver aids make operation “effortless” according to Con.


It’s a night and day operation. Chris Raina has been to Rotorua and left the truck on the dock for Con’s day run. She’s a well oiled operation.

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019



Con Keilman. The photo tells it all. Life is great!

truck and anyone would be thrilled to drive it, but these new ones, mate, they’re just next level. Comfort, visibility; just completely effortless driving. I mean, look at this for an office, blended brakes and retarder, adaptive cruise, it’s even got a heated or cooled seat! I can have a hot arse or a cold one,” he laughs. The new truck runs the Euro 5 DC16 115 L01 15.6-litre V8 engine, at 463kW (620hp) and 3000Nm (2213lb/ft) of torque. Behind the OEM’s hallmark big banger is the GRSO905R 14-speed Opticruise AMT transmission, with the AMS640S front axles and AD400SA rears both riding on air. The truck features an air deflector, drop visor, Kelsa bar, spotlights, and Alcoa Dura-Bright wheels. Inside the cavernous Highline cab there are those heated and cooled leather seats with the V8 logo embossed into their backrests, a fridge, and all


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October 2019

the usual creature comforts you’d expect to find in a big Scania. There’s also a Guardian Seeing Eye machine for additional safety, which Con is perfectly happy to have in the cab. “The trucks are on the go night and day and after all it’s only there to eliminate risk and prevent problems. Na, she’s all good with me.” At some point late this year or early next, the faithful old 4-axle trailer behind the Scania is due for replacement with a new Roadmaster 5-axle unit. Con’s been with the Mouats for four years and having worked in trucking all his life, including an eight year stint with Fonterra, he can’t speak highly enough of his employers. “Once or twice in your career you work for people like them. They’re generous and genuinely care about their staff, and they provide great gear. That’s straight up.” 


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relationships. As for the biggest problem in the industry, as he sees it, Stephen said it would have to be the roads. “They’re a bit of a hazard, as is the traffic. I just had someone back straight

out in front of me earlier. You can’t stop stupidity!” When faced with a choice between Ford and Holden, Stephen was quick to answer “Holden!”

and was heading to Auckland with a load of bulk resin granules. Samuel was driving ‘Razor Sharp’, a 2018 Kenworth K200 with an 18-speed Roadranger. He started driving trucks when he

was 18 and has been driving for 12 years now, the past three for Guy Knowles Transport. “It was in the blood really, I was brought up around trucks so it was inevitable I’d end up driving them,” he says. Samuel loves the freedom offered by driving trucks. “Doing your own thing, being on the road and being your own boss. I don’t really know any better! I love the scenery too.” The biggest issue Samuel can think of is a personal one. “Being away from family and friends. Driving requires so much away time and it’s tough with young kids.” The vexing question was cruise ship or airliner: “Airliner – you get there faster!”

Stephen Love Stephen Love had just finished a delivery when Faye Lougher pulled into the service lane behind Levin’s main street. The owner-driver for Mainfreight does a regular run between Palmerston North, Foxton and Levin, and was heading back to Palmerston North when he finished his deliveries. He was worried his 2018 Isuzu N Series wasn’t clean enough, but Faye reassured him it showed it was a working truck! Stephen’s main type of work is general freight, with a bit of dangerous goods as well. Originally a manufacturing manager in the food industry, Stephen said his sister-inlaw had her own company and was an owner-driver, which gave him an insight into the industry. When a job became available two years ago, he decided it was time for a change. “I thought I’d give it a go and I love it. It’s a great job and, if you work hard, you get the rewards.” The best part of the job for him is dealing with customers and building

Samuel Seymour Samuel Seymour had stopped for a coffee at Longburn when Faye Lougher stopped to snap a photo. Based in Palmerston North, he had come off the ferry that morning in Wellington after a trip to Christchurch,


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October 2019



JUST TRUCKIN’ AROUND – Overseas Troy Rhodes While visiting the Brisbane area recently, Carl Kirkbeck met with Troy Rhodes fuelling up at the BP Truck Stop at Rocklea. A career truckie who has been driving in the industry since he was 19, Troy currently drives for Market Express out of the rural township of Leeton, not too far from Wagga Wagga in New South Wales. Chatting to Troy, we find he had literally just received the keys to his new ride, the Kenworth T909 pictured here, now with only just a touch over 12,000km on the clock. “It’s still got the new smell,” laughed Troy. Troy had arrived from Griffith in NSW with a load of fresh chicken on board that he had just delivered to the Coles distribution centre for the local supermarkets. Being a regular run for Troy, he was now waiting for the produce markets to open in the morning so that he could collect his backload – which he reckoned would be ready around 7am – and then point the nose south and head straight back to NSW. The T909 runs an X15 Cummins set at 600hp, fitted with a manual 18-speed Roadranger. “There is no way you have a truck like this with an AMT in it,” was the comment from

Troy. We would have to agree with that remark. The 4-axle, 22m FTE refrigerated semi-trailer, set up for 26 pallets, is near-new as well, with only 40,000km on it. It is a unique unit with its front axle in the quad set being a lift axle, allowing it to manage heavier applications when called upon. Asking Troy the vexing question Holden or Ford, the reply was “definitely Ford”. And, as for the sports team he supports, it is a big thumbs up for Collingwood in the AFL. 

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Smiles under the South Island sun It was a day for good bastards, rough diamonds, and plenty of happy kids and their caregivers as the 2019 Rigs for Kids paraded around greater Dunedin under the winter sun.


his is not a truck show, but a chance for the transport industry to show and throw its support behind Greg Inch and his incredible team of volunteers, all for the cause of putting big smiles on as many faces as possible – whether it be children or adults on the day. After the ride, there was food put on for drivers and their passengers and, later, a charity auction that raised around $9000. Proceeds from this went to Pregnancy Help Dunedin, The Kiwi Family Trust, Otago Down Syndrome Society, NICU Dunedin Hospital, distraction bags for children visiting the ED at the Dunedin Hospital, and Play Specialists at the children’s ward at the Dunedin Hospital. “We have sponsors with no commercial expectations, and transport operators who freely supply their trucks year in and year out. We can’t thank them enough,” says Greg. After 28 years – and still going strong – Rigs for Kids is now starting to see second-generation drivers coming through and paying it forward. 


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

JG Henderson operator Colin Campbell with his crew for the run, Angel and Pauline.

Pacific Haulage Western Star operator, Hadleigh Saxon and his team, Tamara and Brett.


Fire and Emergency New Zealand had a number of trucks on the ride. The old Ford even got out for a run.

Sharp line-up of Dynes gear unloading children at the drop-off point.

The kids quickly associated the bright green Sterlings with the South Island’s Summerland Express Freight.

More pictures overleaf

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019



A Fulton Hogan Mercedes-Benz Actros put a smile on many young faces.

The new Blackhead Quarries Arocs traded dirt for tarmac on the day.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

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One for the ladies Story by Will Shiers • Photos by Tom Cunningham

When Will Shiers visits a container haulier in the east of England, he’s in for a pleasant surprise.


hen New Zealand Trucking editor Dave McCoid asked me if I could write a story on UK operator Scotts Haulage, my immediate reaction was “who?” “My friend Dawn Mansfield knows the boss, Yvonne Scott, and she says they’re a great company,” says Dave, who goes on to explain that it’s a container haulier, based in Kettering, Northamptonshire, which pulls boxes out of the Port of Felixstowe on England’s east coast. If I’m honest, this information doesn’t exactly fill me with


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

optimism. You see, not only have I not heard of the company, but experience also tells me that container hauliers in this neck of the woods don’t run overly inspiring kit. You see the east of England is as flat as a witch’s chest, in fact the highest point is just 300m above sea level, so clearly you don’t need a lot of horsepower to drag half-empty cans around. ‘They’ll be running a handful of rolling roadblocks, probably tired DAF CFs or underpowered Renault Premiums’, I think as I pick up the phone to call Scotts Haulage. “Yes, we’d love to do a story for New Zealand Trucking,” says Yvonne. “In fact it’s good timing as our new Volvo FH16 will be on the road soon.” I was in the car and driving up the A1 quicker than you can say ‘750 horsepower’! OVER THE YEARS I’ve met a lot of people who like trucks, but I don’t think I’ve ever encountered anyone quite as passionate about them as Yvonne.

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ “I call them my ladies,” she says, describing the fleet that she presides over. “To some people motors are just pieces of metal, but not to me.” What really impresses me is that not only does she do an incredible job of running a 15-strong truck fleet, but she also finds the time to help out in her daughter’s beauty salon. “I certainly don’t do it all alone though,” says the unassuming Yvonne, who concentrates on the financial side of the business these days. Stepson Mike, who she says “eats and sleeps motors”, takes care of much of the day-to-day running. Like his dad, Gary, Mike also drives for the firm. “The two of them are such a huge help, both on the road, and when helping out with other aspects of the business,” explains Yvonne. “Running this company really is a joint family effort.” Yvonne’s interest in haulage started at a very early age. “My father was a lorry driver, so it’s always been in my blood,” she says. So, when in 1991 husband-to-be Gary said he was interested in buying and running his own truck, Yvonne was only too happy to play a major role. “Gary wasn’t keen on getting his operator’s licence, so I decided to do it instead,” she recalls. “I borrowed some money from my dad for the course, and then lied to the bank in order to buy a truck.” She remembers how the bank manager, a friend at the time, initially refused her request to borrow money to buy a lorry. He told her to come back and tell him that she wanted the money to buy a car instead, and that’s exactly what she did. A few days later she and Gary were the proud owners of a very big, secondhand Swedish car – a Scania 111! “So that was our first motor, but it certainly wouldn’t be our last,” says Yvonne. “While Gary was happy being an ownerdriver, I wasn’t. I love motors and I wanted another, and another and another. Once we had more than one motor Gary just said, ‘you carry on love’, and I did.” While that initial Scania served Scotts Haulage well, it would be the last one in the fleet. “If I’m perfectly honest, I’ve never really understood the fascination people have with Scanias,” says Yvonne, who admits to being “Volvo through and

Gary (left), Yvonne, and Mike make up the formidable family team behind Scotts Haulage.

through”. While she acknowledges that V8 Scanias “do sound better than Volvos”, that’s where the compliments end. “Volvos are more comfortable and are a far prettier motor, in fact the prettiest of all,” says the beautician. “Your eye just gets drawn into it,” she declares, pointing out of the window to the new FH16 750 sitting outside. “And our grey livery is just the icing on the cake. It’s just lovely to look at, isn’t it?” I wholeheartedly agree. Up until very recently Scotts had only ever purchased used trucks, and since the early 1990s almost exclusively from the same local Volvo dealer. “We tend to buy three-year-old

Volvos make up the bulk of the Scotts Haulage pack.

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October 2019



The company normally keeps vehicles in the fleet for 10 or 12 years – but that doesn’t make replacing them any easier for passionate Yvonne.

working for us, and it’s great to reward their hard work and motors, some outright and some on finance,” explains Yvonne. loyalty with decent motors,” says Yvonne. “We normally buy two at a time – sister trucks.” While she is incredibly enthusiastic about the trucks, the But there have been exceptions to the rule. In 2015 the company, and the industry in general, she does admit that it company purchased a new Volvo FH, and then, of course, can be tough. Scotts Haulage solely carries out container work. there’s the flagship FH16, which went on the road in July. This “The delays can be crippling,” she tells us, explaining that it’s takes the total number of Volvos in the fleet to 11, consisting not uncommon for a driver to sit at the port for four to five of the FH16, five FH4s, four version 3s and a solitary version hours. The Chinese New Year is a 2. “She’s our spare motor,” explains particularly challenging period, with a Yvonne, referring to the older truck. The FH16 750 far lower volume of containers needing “We use her when there’s a motor off In May, Scotts Haulage took delivery of a new to be moved. “We do all our work the road.” Volvo FH16 750. After its arrival, two months of There are also some imposters preparing the truck to the company’s typically for one company, and I really can’t fault them. Sometimes they park up in this Volvo enthusiast’s fleet: high standard started. It commissioned their own motors in order to keep us four DAF XFs. “We needed some Fusion Engineering to fabricate and fit side working,” says Yvonne. motors in a hurry, and they were the skirts and a smooth catwalk. Other additions Another issue is the age of the fleet. right price. It was a quick fix,” says include light bars, rear bumper and a bull Scotts normally keeps its trucks until Yvonne, almost apologetically. “Our bar borrowed from its previous FH flagship. they are 10 or 12 years old, by which standards slipped a bit with those. I The truck is finished in the haulier’s usual eyetime they have covered well over one know that sounds bad, but we really catching paintwork, complete with England’s million kilometres. Yvonne says they are Volvo through and through.” It’s St George’s Cross. The finishing touch is a start to haemorrhage money when they not so much the badge on the grille private number plate. get to this age, and certainly keep the that bothers her, more the fact that Although initially the newcomer won’t be workshop busy. She says her head tells unlike the rest of the fleet only one overexerting itself, Mike is toying with the idea of them has been painted in Scotts of branching out into heavy haulage. “After all, her not to keep them for so long, but Haulage’s familiar grey livery. “I you don’t want to put all of your eggs into one her heart has a very different view. “I’d keep them all if I could, and never sell wish we could afford to get them basket,” he says. any of them,” admits Yvonne. “But all sprayed tomorrow, but we can’t,” that’s just me. I’m passionate about them.” she says. “They cost £6000 (NZ$ 11,400) a motor, which is Scotts Haulage rents space in a yard and would like property hard to justify on secondhand trucks.” Mike has a friend who of its own. “We are aiming to have our own land, but it’s does vinyl wrapping, and although this option would work out difficult for smaller companies like us,” says Yvonne. “The significantly cheaper than paint, both son and mum agree that problem is being able to afford it. Any spare money we have the quality isn’t as good. So, the DAFs will remain in white. goes into the motors. That’s how it is really.” The reason why their appearance grates on her so much Another issue is diesel theft, which is another growing is simply because the rest of the fleet looks so amazing. The concern in the UK. “We have been hit a few times, and it costs drivers put a lot of effort into making sure that the trucks look us between £1500 (NZ$2860) and £2000 (NZ$3810) a time,” as good as possible. “They want everything on them,” says declares Yvonne. Yvonne, “and they’re always asking ‘can I have this and can I But, while running a small haulage firm can be tough, it’s have that?’ It’s tough, because they aren’t cheap.” clear that Yvonne loves what she does. She tells us that one day “I start off by looking on eBay,” adds Mike, who not only she’ll hand over the reins entirely to Mike. “I’m so proud of pays for most of the extras, but often fits them too. him,” she says. “And I know that, when the time comes, he’ll But there are some positives to spending money on the do a fantastic job.” But I sense that won’t be any time soon… trucks’ appearances, namely that it improves the haulier’s “I just love the motors,” she tells me. “At the end of the day image. It also gives the drivers something to be proud of, which I touch them and I say ‘do me well ladies’.” And so far, they in turn helps with staff retention, which is presently a huge have.  problem in the UK. “We’ve got a fantastic team of drivers


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October 2019



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How much more Aussie can you get? A Ford LNT 9000 Louisville ready to hook up the tri semi with gates and tarps and straight out on to the Pacific Highway for a blast through to Sydney with a load of XXXX (Aussie spelling for beer).

Rocklea Classic Truck Show 2019 Story and photos by Alan Critchley

Who would have known that the pearly gates to truckers’ heaven would be found at the Rocklea Showgrounds on a warm weekend in May?


he Heritage Truck Association Australia Inc. timed its annual show at Rocklea Showgrounds to coincide with The Brisbane Truck Show. The weather played ball, producing a typical mild Queensland weekend perfect for the outside display. Classic truck shows are renowned for presenting all manner of vehicles and machinery from all corners of the transport industry. The Rocklea show certainly did


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October 2019

not disappoint, with as per original spec restorations through to highly modified creations all represented. From steam-powered traction engines of the 1900s through to current linehaul tractor units, the variety was jaw-dropping. Examples of this included a road train pioneering Leyland Hippo, home-built Diamond T, a stunning W Model Kenworth and a period correct Ford LNT 9000 Louisville that looked as though it had just dropped in from the late 80s. Every vehicle has a use-by date where its economical life expires and abandonment prevails. Fortunately, on the global stage there exists a band of merry men and women whose passion and commitment ensures the history of our industry does not just simply rust away. We are pleased to report that restoration and preservation is alive and well on the West Island.


In all its glory. A 1985 Kenworth W925 with Detroit 8V92 power, RT14615T trans, and 44,000lb rears. Owned by Beth and Bernie Tobin.

Pastoral care The North Australia Pastoral Company purchased six trucks and trailers between 1947 and 1949. The trucks arrived by boat in Sydney with bonnet and firewall. They received a box for a seat and were driven to Brisbane where coach builders Athol Hedges fitted cabs. The trucks were used to deliver cattle for shipment to abattoir, as well as carting wool and supplies to stations. Around 1960 they were replaced by B Model Macks. The Leylands helped to pave the way for the modern-day road train.

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October 2019



All shapes and sizes.

One man’s mission Freshly retired Evan Williams of Queensland was searching for a hobby to occupy his newfound free time. Travelling home from New South Wales, Evan spotted a 1966 Diamond T P3320 tipper beside the Pacific Highway for sale and desperately in need of immense TLC. After the best part of four years of contemplation, Evan negotiated the purchase and began the restoration. Evan’s time at TNT during the 70s and early 80s influenced his decision to not only restore the Diamond T but also ensure it performed comparably with modern-day long-distance rigs. The result is ‘Red Bull’, the combination and blending together of the Diamond T with a 1997 Western Star 3800E donor truck, Cat C12, Eaton 13-speed transmission, Peterbilt 63” Unibilt sleeper cab and a significant amount of custom fabrication.


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October 2019

The Diamond T sat for sale in a paddock while Evan contemplated a big project.


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The reunion crew gathered at the Brisbane Truck Show earlier this year. A fitting place too, in front of the Elphinstone high-capacity semi. Payload and power were the key ‘drivers’ for Heathstock owner, the late Murray Taylor.

Happy times remembered Story by Dave McCoid

Although Heathstock Haulage no longer plies South Island roads, the culture that owner, the late Murray Taylor, built is still being celebrated.


eathstock Haulage’s light blue fleet was known the length and breadth of the South Island from the late 80s until the early 2000s. The company’s Fodens, Freightliners, and sole Peterbilt turned heads and sent truck spotters into a frenzy whenever they appeared. While watching a Saturday morning kids’ rugby match last winter, two ex drivers hatched a plan. “I was saying to Grant ‘Spinner’ Duncan that I’d like to go to the Brisbane Truck Show,” said Iain Wright. “He said ‘What about putting it on the Heathstock Haulage Facebook page? Say we’re going, join us if you want’. “The main driver for me was that we were a group of fellas who loved catching up and talking about the good old days, but like a lot of staff from old trucking companies, we only did it when someone from the team had passed away. In the end we had a group of 20-odd ex drivers and even some of their sons come along. Heathstock was a big part of their growing up too. Riding in Dad’s truck. It got a few into the industry.” Heathstock Haulage grew from a small agricultural contracting business, the brainchild of Murray Taylor. Through the late 80s/early 90s the company picked up contracts carting coal out of the West Coast over the Lewis Pass to Christchurch, as well as salmon meal from Nelson to Invercargill. Murray also owned a Lime Quarry in Waikari,


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October 2019

North Canterbury, where the fleet was based, that provided backloads and obvious productivity benefits. “Murray was ‘Murray’, never called ‘boss’,” says Iain. “He was an amazing man, and nothing was ever a problem and there was never a reason why something couldn’t be done. “Our dispatcher, Murray ‘Clem’ Clements, must also get a mention too. He was great at keeping the boys moving, and later drove the flagship ex Peter McDowell 362 Peterbilt (Ref New Zealand Trucking magazine, Top Truck, November 2000). “Murray loved the heavy Peterbilt undercarriage, Cat motors and light cabs of the Fodens, the dominant marque in the fleet.” Heathstock Haulage sold to Freight Lines in 2004. Sadly, Murray lost his life in an accident at the lime quarry in 2015. “When we lost Murray, it was a very sad day for all of us who knew him,” said Iain. “Brisbane Truck Show was an amazing trip. Only two days were spent at the show, we spent the other two days sitting in a bar reminiscing and talking shit.” 

The Heathstock Peterbilt was a real attention grabber back in the day and able to cart 32.5 tonne. (How far have we come?)


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Rob and Rina Taylor, Christchurch, brought along ‘Fugly Wugly’, a 2002 Scania T124G. It has a 420 Scania motor and Scania 12-speed gearbox.

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COUPLING ASSISTANT Increases Driver Coupling Efficiency and Confidence. Supports Safety. ELI-te™ assists the driver with LED lights on the fifth wheel to allow for quick recognition of a successful or failed coupling attempt. Drivers no longer need to guess on the success of the couple. ELI-te™ prevents potential mistakes before they happen. The ELI-te™ (Electronic Lock Indicator – technology enhanced) system is an optional feature for the popular FW35 Series Holland Fifth Wheels. • Successful couplings trigger white LED lights to assist the driver with visual lock inspection prior to performing a tug test. • Unsuccessful coupling triggers flashing red LED lights to notify the driver of an issue prior to tug test.

ELI-te™ (Electronic Lock Indicator – technology enhanced) is designed for fleets looking to enhance driver coupling efficiency and safety.

• Promotes consistent and thorough driver coupling inspections. • Robust electrical components: sealed one-piece harness, long-life LED lights, durable inductive sensors, and steel encased logic module ensure reliable operation in the toughest conditions. • Superior FW35 Series TwinLock™ reliability enhanced with intelligent logic and interactive LED lights to assist with coupling inspections. • ELI-te™ option for the FW35 Series is user friendly, requires minimal maintenance, and is backed by a 2-year warranty. • Retro-fit kits are also available.

Flashing red warning LED lights for failed coupling attempt. In the case of a failed coupling attempt, bright red flashing LED lights assist the driver to quickly recognize a potentially costly mistake before attempting a tug test or driving away.

High intensity white LED lights for successful coupling attempt. A successful couple triggers high-intensity white LED lights, strategically aimed at the kingpin & lock for enhanced visibility during the inspection process, especially in poor weather & low-light conditions.

Available Now Part Number XA-311-A-1R-R-P XA-351-A-1R-R-P

Description Top Plate 2’’Diamond No-Lube ELI-te Fitted Top Plate 2’’Diamond ELI-te Fitted

Talk to your local Gough Transpecs or Gough TWL team member to find out more.

* Additional power cable is required.




View the Video on YOUTUBE!




More curves to Mazda design than many US-focused utes.

Steady as she goes Story and photos by Jacqui Madelin

Forget the fanfare and fireworks of new models or overhyped option-package specials. Behind all the pizazz, the steady performers just keep on trucking, and Mazda’s BT-50 is one of them.


here’s always plenty of hype around new model launches, the fanfare designed to obscure the competition quietly plugging away in the background. Even small changes can create market noise, especially in the busy ute market around ‘Fieldays Specials’ – often optioned-up variants at sometimes marked-down prices. But once all that noise settles down, buyers do what they’ve always done – simply consider whatever’s available, what it does, and what it costs. Mazda’s ute has long been a fixture on the New Zealand work scene. The first B1500 arrived here back in 1966, assembly began here the following year, and there’s been a Mazda ute on our market – B-Series, Bounty and now BT-50 – ever since.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

That first BT-50 shared essentially the same underpinnings – and the same Thai factory – as Ford’s Ranger, and originally they competed on spec and price, too. More recently the two have diverged, with the Ford getting mechanical updates that didn’t flow to the Japanese brand. In 2016, Mazda tweaked its ute line-up to undercut Ford’s, reduced the complexity of its range, dropped the top-spec Limited, and set prices and spec to appeal as much to the workplace buyer as the private one – for example, by offering a Commercial Care package with three years fixed-price servicing. The earlier curvy design took on a more squared-off look, reflecting that the rugged ‘American’ flavour of the likes of Ranger and Hilux clearly had more market appeal here – the two topped the light commercial rankings here in the year to 31 July 2019, with more than 9000 sales between them for 32% of the bracket. The Mazda’s a steady performer in fifth, for 5% of the market. That’s 1433 sales, or around 20% of the brand’s total passenger and light commercial tally. December 2018 saw a new Freestyle cab variant, and April that year an Alpine Audio system upgrade, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for the reintroduced Limited version we’re driving here. That’s a spec upgrade, but Mazda’s still determined to keep it real, and the Limited remains less fussy – especially in terms of unnecessary frills – than the likes of the Ranger Wildtrak and its equivalents, and considerably more affordable.


Back seats plain, spacious enough,

Cabin layout is simple and easy to use, with

with 12V socket available.

focus on addition of an Alpine touchscreen.

It does top the BT-50 GSX with leather for the fairly flat seats (with the driver’s one power adjustable), privacy glass and heated, folding side mirrors with integrated indicators. So much for the facts, but what’s it like to drive? We’ve always liked the Mazda’s on-road persona. The Ranger – though delivering a less jiggly ride than Toyota’s Hilux – feels more truck-like than the BT-50; as you’d expect, given Mazda’s proven track record for driver-focused vehicles. Not that the BT-50 feels like a car, far from it, but it certainly feels a little less like a compromise when you’re pounding the tarmac. This 5-cylinder 3.2-litre intercooled turbo engine has a pleasantly gruff note, without being too intrusive within the cabin, and always delivered the grunt we wanted when we wanted it. Admittedly our test period coincided with lashing weather and a schedule too busy to pick up our standard load, so it was largely empty this time around, but with 470Nm of torque and a 6-speed transmission, we wouldn’t expect our 500kg test load to faze it; indeed utes often feel better with a weight out back. Like all its BT-50 siblings this Limited comes with a locking rear diff as standard, activated via a large button ahead of the gear lever, and it’s a 4WD. (The GSX that is the next step down also comes in 2WD for urbanites seeking a ute at a lower price.) Clamber aboard, and though like the majority of utes today the cabin carries numerous car-like design cues, the overall effect is sensibly rugged, bar the new 7.8” touchscreen, fitted locally by Mazda but fully integrated. Though it doesn’t deliver as much electronic trickery as the Ranger’s, it’s easy to use. For example, fiddle with the climate dial and you’ll see a large, clear icon of the front seats and airflow, plus temp and fan strength, so you can rapidly take in what’s happening – and what you’re changing. We’re told it’ll be used across Mazda’s ute line-up. That said, the array of buttons to access mute, music, the menu and other functions is rather small. However, once you’ve used it a few times, you’ll barely need to look again. Cruise control and certain sound system controls are also accessible via the steering wheel. The front cubby is huge; ahead of it there’s a 12V socket,

Leather-covered seats are wide, flattish, and clearly aimed at sturdy occupants.

Max payload is 1082kg, while up to 3500kg can be towed (braked).

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019






3.2-litre 5-cylinder intercooled turbo diesel

Max payload:



147kW at 3000rpm

Kerb weight:



470Nm at 1750 to 2500rpm

Gross vehicle weight:


Claimed fuel economy:


Cargo length:


Fuel tank capacity:

80 litres

Cargo width:



6-speed auto with manual mode

Cargo height:



Independent double wishbone with coil-over dampers and anti-roll bar up front, rigid (live) leaf spring rear

Cargo capacity:

VDA litres data not supplied for cargo box


17” alloys, 265/65 R17 tyres




Ventilated disc front, drum rear, ABS





Stability/traction control: Yes Airbags:




Min turning radius:




then two cup holders and another cubby below the dash, with a second 12V socket and the simple array of controls. The reversing camera shows you a sliver of rear bumper, and the tow bar if it’s fitted – you can also show the centreline as you back, to help line up a trailer. Rear passengers get a no-frills space with sufficient leg, foot and headroom for most, and a 12V charger fitted to the rear of the centre console. Niggles are few once one considers this vehicle’s focus. Our tester would have liked a bit more side support for the seats,


Towing braked/unbraked: 3500kg/750kg

which are clearly designed around large, broad occupants who aren’t likely to corner with vigour. The next BT-50 will depart completely from its relationship with Ford, instead being a joint development with Isuzu. Meanwhile, if you want the Ranger’s underpinnings but not its price, the BT-50 could please – provided you like the looks. As for the Limited – check what you get for the $59,795 price, and be sure it’s worth the premium for your usage over the broadly similar $55,795 4WD GSX. 


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AM11760 Rear (Pair)

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Better productivity from the rain Keynote speaker – Scott O’Donnell, board member, Richardson Group New Zealand needs to become more productive, its various stakeholders and interest groups working together efficiently, so that the country can take its wares to the world. That was the overarching theme to Scott O’Donnell’s keynote presentation at the 2019 IRTENZ conference. However, to bring that vision to fruition, there are numerous stumbling blocks that need to be overcome – on the parts of government, the wider transport industry, and customers alike – that O’Donnell indicates will require a concerted effort and willingness from all parties. He cites numerous points of concern. One of the biggest O’Donnell sees at the moment is compliance. “When you’re a company of our size you can get it wrong and we know that, occasionally, we do. We’ve got no problem in that instance taking a smack on the chin, but what drives us nuts is when we’ve got competitors who aren’t being held to the same account. We know there are some challenging operators out there who are breaking rules to survive,” he says. The next challenge O’Donnell sees is in efficiency – or the lack thereof. Here, he points out two recent trends affecting the efficiency of the transport industry. The first is load amalgamation. “Huge amounts of waiting time, lots of half loads, and the cost of delivering that service is expensive when it doesn’t need to be,” he says about the livestock sector in particular. Waiting time is a particular issue. “If our trucks could all work for their full 13-hour shift every day, we’d need far fewer trucks and use much less fuel – but we know we can’t do that because of a whole range of constrictions in the channel.” He

Scott O’Donnell addresses the delegates at IRTENZ 2019.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

The Institute of Ro ad Transport Engin eers of New Zealand held their biennial confe rence in Rotorua in Augu st. The theme this year was Technology and Infrastructure, arg uably the two most pertinent top ics of the day. As a result, we’ll feature extended coverage of the co nference over the next few months in order to bring to you commentar y on these important su bjects from leading academ ics and industry mi nds.

adds that congestion at ports and by traffic exacerbates the situation. “You risk going broke by moving loads too slowly. Long term, we have to find a way forward from some of those things.” One option, says O’Donnell, is doing things at night. Another is automation; an “interesting curveball.” There’s no question that technology can steer the truck from point A to point B – but there are lots of things it can’t do. There will always be an operator in the cab doing something. But, hopefully, it will allow relief for that driver. If they get on the highway and hit that button, and effectively do something else for a bit of time, then I think it’s a good thing for road transport.” Allied to automation is the rise of alternative power, and in this regard he suggests that none of the current options are a viable replacement for diesel – at least regarding linehaul applications. Regarding electric power, O’Donnell says that the challenges include New Zealand’s hilly terrain, higher purchase prices, the demand placed on the grid through charging, and the weight penalty of the batteries that will result in an increase in the number of trucks needed to move payload. “There’s no question those trucks will be a nicer workspace – smoother, quieter, high levels of automation. But I see electric, in the short-term, being suited to town delivery and short-haul work. I think the line-haul function will stay with diesel for a long time.” He says that New Zealand is very well placed for hydrogen power because, effectively, the country can produce a lot of it from renewable electricity. “The challenge we face is it takes a phenomenal amount of electricity to process the hydrogen from the atmosphere into some useful state. If we can get the price down to 1c/kWh and generate it off-peak, there could be a good outcome for New Zealand. Scandinavian countries are very strong on hydrogen because they have lots of renewable electricity. There are some forklift trucks and light vehicles running hydrogen, but we’re yet to see much in the heavy space,” he says. Regarding culzean gas, O’Donnell says that huge amounts of time have been spent trying to figure out if it can work. “That’s been pretty much shelved at this stage. The cost of the culzean gas is not much but the cost of creating distribution networks is huge. Given we’ve got ‘dead dinosaur’ networks in place everywhere, the cost of creating those networks is quite a challenge – as it is for hydrogen and electricity.” The next big challenge for New Zealand that O’Donnell outlines is its infrastructure and the willingness of the powers that be to spend wisely on it. As he says, New Zealand doesn’t lack capital, but the situation where the people who control the

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ capital want to spend on things that are good for the country. “If I had a dream it would be that we had four lanes from Whangarei to Invercargill. The challenge for road transport is not speed, it’s getting the number of kilometres done in a given hour. I’m sure those who do the trip from Whangarei to Hamilton pull their hair out. The inefficiency is mindboggling. I know those who do a lot of work in the Auckland market risk going broke because of congestion.” In all, O’Donnell says that constraints in the system are stopping efficiency. “I’d like to see New Zealand become much more productive,” he says. “We are very efficient at turning rain into grass, wine, eggs, milk powder… But we’re not quite so good at creating more value for that product nor so getting it to the end consumer. We’ve got to find a way to take the rain, turn it into something that has real value and sell it to the world market.”

Not wasting the moment

Sam Donaldson, Waste Management’s senior project engineer – electric vehicles, spoke at August’s IRTENZ conference about the company’s electric fleet implementation. “We’re always looking for new technologies that can help us do what we need to do better to help the general population.” Donaldson said Waste Management found approximately 75 percent of its total operational emissions profile came from burning diesel, and realised it could make a huge dent in the emissions load by converting their fleet to electric. “In 2015 we started with passenger vehicles. We have nearly every make of electric vehicle available in New Zealand in our passenger fleet, but the main goal was always going to be electric trucks.” Fleet data told them one electric truck saves about 125 litres of diesel per day. “Obviously that varies with the different trucks we have, we’ve got a whole range from little flat decks up to 58-tonne

Waste Management’s Sam Donaldson told delegates that even with the cost of conversion, electric trucks offer their business a positive whole of life cost now.

truck and trailers, but that’s the average, and across our fleet of around 800 trucks it’s close to 100,000 litres of diesel every single day. As we move towards converting this entire fleet to zero exhaust emissions, it’s going to make a really big impact.” Donaldson said electric trucks were perfect for metro and last mile deliveries, and waste collection. “We’re not talking about a lot of linehaul work here, we’re talking about trucks that do about 200 kilometres a day on average and then return back to base. That return to base is quite important because that enables us to go out, do our collections through the day, come back and have overnight to charge.” Another aspect of waste collection that makes electric vehicles ideal is its stop-start nature. “For example, a residential collection sideload truck would stop 1200 times a day. In a diesel truck, every time you do that you’re losing energy through friction on the brakes. We can capture some of this energy through a regenerative braking system in our trucks. So far we’re getting up to 30 percent of the energy we use for driving returned to the battery through regenerative braking.”

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019


WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... CONFERENCE 2019 Although Waste Management was committed to an electric truck programme, they weren’t able to buy electric trucks in New Zealand – something they’re still unable to do. “The availability of electric vehicles here is obviously a problem. If we want them, we’re going to have to build them ourselves. “We had a few smaller trucks that were hybrids, which we were quite happy with, but a full electric truck was where we wanted to be. We were keeping a close eye on what was happening around the world, and we found a company in Europe, EMOSS. They had a good track record of converting trucks to electric. They were able to provide us with the technology, the components, the support and the expertise we needed to be able to convert our trucks in-house.” Waste Management’s first box body truck was built as a diesel truck in New Zealand and then sent to The Netherlands where it was converted by EMOSS to electric. “It was very much an R&D project for us, we had some expectations about what it would be like but it really exceeded our expectations. The battery was sized to do a day’s work, but we weren’t really sure how it was going to work out. We took it out and did a wide range of testing with it, we used it on many different routes for many different jobs, and this truck is still running around now, easily doing two, and often three day’s work on a single charge. A little bit over-engineered but it really helped to prove the concept.” Since that first truck, Waste Management has slowly been growing its electric fleet, starting with a side-load collection truck based on an Isuzu chassis, and another based on a Hino chassis. “Structurally they were quite a departure from the box body, a lot larger truck, a very large hydraulic demand, we weren’t really sure how the energy use split was going to be between moving the heavy truck and then also the use of the hydraulics.” Donaldson said that there was a bit of a development process to see how much energy was used through the whole process. “We’ve also done other trucks in the 16-tonne range that are operational at the moment. They easily do their day’s work and come back and charge overnight, ready for the next day. They’ve been exceptional.” From here, Waste Management will be focusing on converting trucks in the 11 to 16 tonne range. Donaldson said more than half the fleet consists of trucks this size and the conversion is reasonably simple. There are nine operational trucks in the current fleet, and others at various states of conversion. “We’re going to ramp up our conversion process. So far we’ve saved about 26,000 litres of diesel, and over 69 tonnes of carbon dioxide, so that’s not a bad start.” In 2018 Waste Management received funding to open New Zealand’s first workshop dedicated to converting diesel trucks into electric vehicles. “Our electric vehicle innovation hub, or as we prefer call it, our workshop, is an important part of what we do, so our intention is that for the foreseeable future we’re going to be converting all of our diesel trucks to electric in-house.” At the moment the company brings in new cab chassis and converts them to electric, but later this year they will start converting used trucks. “We’ve got a couple of trucks that are out in our fleet that


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

are starting to run up some maintenance bills, so we’re going to look to bringing them in and converting them to electric.” The goal is to have 20 converted trucks by the end of 2019. Donaldson says the benefits of changing the fleet to electric are already apparent. “Significantly reduced fuel costs for a start – the cost to fuel our electric trucks is 80 to 85% cheaper than diesel vehicles. The regenerative braking aspect is an important part of this. With the stop-start collection we’re recovering energy and putting it back into our batteries. “We’re coming up to three years into this project and we’re starting to get some data that maintenance costs are around half that of the diesel equivalent. At the same time we built the first electric box body truck, we also built a number of diesel trucks that have been used in the same fleet, so we have some very good direct comparisons between a diesel and electric truck doing exactly the same duty. As the trucks age it will be interesting to see how they compare.” As expected, the initial cost of the first few electric truck conversions was high, but Donaldson said based on the data gathered so far, the total cost of ownership of the electric trucks is expected to be lower than the diesel equivalents. As the technology becomes cheaper and OEMs start producing higher numbers of electric trucks, this will also lower the cost. “There are certainly some challenges with battery-electric trucks and technology. What we’re doing is purchasing a fleet of vehicles fitted with high quality components and removing the most expensive part of that diesel vehicle and replacing it with electric equipment. It’s certainly more expensive, especially given the very low production runs we’re doing. But from our point of view, more importantly than the capital cost for us is going to be the total life ownership costs of the vehicle, and that’s where we’re looking to be better off.” Donaldson said there is also an increased tare mass on Waste Management’s battery-electric trucks. “It’s not insignificant, but we do have the advantage of designing and building ourselves. We can move the components around to suit the


vehicle, so for a particular vehicle that is normally rear-axle heavy, we can move some of the components further forward and vice versa.” Another challenge is upskilling not only the operators of the vehicles, but also the technicians who work on them. “There are significantly fewer parts on an electric truck but it’s a different set of skills. When we have a problem with an electric truck we go to the truck with a laptop; that’s basically our diagnostic tool that solves most of the problems we have. The drive system runs at a significantly higher voltage, about 750 volts DC, so we can’t just have an auto electrician go and look at the high voltage system of our electric trucks, it needs to be a specifically skilled person who can do that. And there are special tools that come along with that. Workshops are going to start to look a little bit different in the future.” Donaldson said driving a battery-electric truck was different from driving a diesel, and overcoming driver aversion was one of the biggest challenges the company faced. “It’s new technology that the operators are sometimes sceptical of. These are true-blue diesel guys and to say to them ‘here’s your new truck, it’s full electric, and it’s completely silent’ – you get some interesting looks, but a really important part of what we’re doing is getting the operator buy-in. “We spend a lot of time with the drivers and tell them about how it works, make sure they understand the technology, and make sure they understand the advantages. We have some ex waste truck drivers who we send out with new drivers to make sure they’re ready and confident in what they’re doing. We find that once they get over that initial hesitation, once they start driving them, we get nothing but positive feedback.” Donaldson said the electric trucks had high torque at low speeds and drivers pulling out at intersections or onto the motorway with a fully laden electric truck were often surprised to discover the truck reacted in a similar fashion to a car. “Obviously it’s very silent too. On an electric truck there is no transmission, just a direct drive electric motor straight to the diff. This is particularly helpful at low speeds, so with the

slower speed start-stop driving there are no gear changes, it just takes off smoothly and quietly. Driving it is effortless. It’s comfortable, it’s quiet, you don’t have the vibrations, so overall it’s a better working environment for our drivers.” In addition to ramping up its conversion programme, Waste Management is also increasing the number of charging points within its sites, as currently every vehicle it puts on the road has its own dedicated charging station. “We install and we monitor them ourselves. As the fleet increases, we’re going to have to look at smart control of our chargers and load sharing of our electric charging network. It’s not only for our truck fleet, we have a large fleet of electric passenger vehicles as well. We’re doing quite a lot of work on installing chargers, but it’s also how to manage those chargers and how we ensure that our electricity supply is going to be sustainable enough. “We’ve been collecting as much data as we can; we’re trying to analyse every aspect of what these trucks do, how many kilometres they’re doing, their energy usage, their maintenance costs, all the breakdown, everything. It’s all a part of not only improving what we’re doing and the engineering behind our trucks, but also validation of the cost of the project.” Donaldson said Waste Management was looking forward to OEMs supplying electric trucks. “We see our conversion process will be going for quite a bit longer, but as soon as OEMs will let us have some working trucks we’ll be into it. As well, things like various technological developments, higher energy densities, perhaps some new chemistries, uses for second- and third-life batteries, will be coming. We will be looking into that in terms of what we can do with our batteries once they are no longer fit for use in our trucks. It’s likely to be something along the lines of stationary storage or grid supplementation and then material recycling. As a waste company we have quite an interest in what happens with the materials in the batteries and the copper after it’s finished its useful life. There will certainly be some developments coming on that front.”  New Zealand Trucking

October 2019



Above: The first installation of the new stainless steel threechannel pressure cell and filter assembly. Left: The new system wheel end installed.

Gaining traction in Europe Story by Gavin Myers • Photos supplied

A proud New Zealand company, Tidd Ross Todd (TRT) has evolved to be a full-service supplier to the local trucking industry. Now, one of its in-house developed products is going international.


nd we’re not just talking three hours westward to Australia. No, TRT has a presence there too. Now, though, it has its sights set squarely on the European market with the latest generation of Traction Air, its central tyre inflation (CTI) system. The Traction Air story goes back more than 22 years, when TRT developed it to meet demand from industry for a high-quality, but reasonably priced, CTI system. The current system was then developed around 13 years ago and – undergoing various phases of technological development since – has proved itself to be very successful, gaining significant market share in Australasia (it is also the OE system fitted by Scania Australia). In New Zealand, Australia and parts of Asia, Traction Air can be found


New Zealand Trucking

across all sectors and in any application that has an off-road component to it, where tyre pressures would need to be finely adjusted to afford the vehicle optimum traction. In predominantly on-road applications, the advantages of a CTI system are numerous. Operators can expect enhanced tyre life, better fuel consumption, reduced downtime, and reduced impact on all components thanks to the correct pressure being maintained for the terrain and speed. If a small leak develops the system can keep the tyre’s pressure up (depending on the rate of the leak and the size of the vehicle’s compressor) so that the vehicle can safely reach its destination. The ambition to enter Europe came about four years ago when Gavin Halley, national sales manager at TRT, became aware of a potential opportunity in the region. However, it wasn’t simply

October 2019

a case of shipping over some units. After studying the market, the TRT team realised that the existing platform would need to be developed to both fulfil the needs of the market and meet Compliance Europe (CE) regulations. “About two and a half years ago the decision was made to design purposebuilt, multi-channel systems (front, drive and trailer axles) for the European market. We invested a lot of money and resources on research and development; the new system had to be better than anything we’ve offered before. We looked at every component that went into the system and how we could improve on it. As a result, everything has changed – it’s a ground-up, blankpage, nuts and bolts design,” says Gavin. This meant redesigning the system’s hardware and developing new software to control it, all while using CE-certified components. Before we get into the hardware, Gavin explains that it is the new software that really gives this latest generation of Traction Air the advantage. “This system is designed to be at the forefront of CTI, so we needed to make sure the design is future-proof

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ and could be integrated with the vehicle’s systems.” It uses CAN bus communication – just like all modern vehicles – to send signals between the electronic control unit (ECU) and the functional components of the system. This means that potentially connecting to a vehicle’s system will be easier, as well as cutting down on the metres and metres of cable traditionally used to wire up such systems. “Many additional input and output options are available and every form of communication protocol, including Bluetooth, cellular and RF to name a few. These have been built into the new ECU for expansion in the future,” Gavin adds. For the driver, control of the system is via one of two new interfaces – a double-DIN touchscreen unit for multi-channel systems, and a singleDIN unit for single- or dual-channel systems. The information displayed can be personalised to the customer’s requirements. There are even options for personalised screens with the customer’s branding or messages. “One key difference is the size of the LCD screen and the level of engagement with the driver. They’re much more aware of what’s happening – from a safety aspect, as a vehicle owner, you want to ensure the driver always knows what’s happening with their vehicle.

Above: GPS speed up technology independent of the truck. Right: The first front axle installation on a new V8 Scania in Sweden. Below: MTS Haulage Ltd’s Scania with Traction Air installed.

“Everything within the system is easily changeable. The programming functions are simple and effective. We can set the speed and pressure settings for an individual customer’s operation, or customise the safety thresholds for any specific task or fleet requirement. The system can be updated through loading data from a USB, or we can talk

The newly installed Traction Air system on TRT’s TIDD PC28 Crane for operation in Australia maintains tyre pressure at a constant 896 kpa (130 PSI).

the customer through the background key entry functions over the phone,” says Gavin. As with the current system, a GPS receiver is used to accurately measure ground speed independent of the vehicle. On the hardware side of the system, Gavin explains that the driving force behind the new development was to put the highest levels of protection into the system from the outset. For example, given Europe’s harsh environment, the new system features a thermal switch and heater elements that click in at -20°C to maintain an even operating temperature in the pressure cell. “We couldn’t find valves from any supplier that could operate at -40°C, which is important for preventing the valves from potentially locking and for protecting the integrity of the system. The pressure cell, pneumatic control centre and wheel-end packages are entirely new,” he says. They’ve also been built out of stainless steel – to withstand the salt laid onto the roads during snowy conditions – and feature a ‘very heavy-duty’ sealing system. They have also added new filtration elements and IP66 rated seals, so the environment inside the pressure cell remains sterile and contaminant free. Likewise, the all-new wheel-end

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019


WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... packages feature strengthened sealing arrangements and improved bracketry for bolt-on-bolt-off ease of fitment and maintenance. The new system has been put through its paces locally with testing in extreme off-highway environments, as well as in Scandinavia all through the winter. Scandinavia, along with the United Kingdom, is the first European markets to have units installed. The Scandinavian market will also be offered pre-prepared axle systems that carry factory warranties. “Our distributor in Scandinavia is Bevola, which specialises in traction solutions and has a strong presence in the logging sector,” says Gavin. “Traction Air is a complementary product to many other systems Bevola provides. Sweden’s industry is so advanced – if we can get a stranglehold there, we can get into any market.” With the first installations happening there now, TRT’s Kiwi techies have been training up the local installers – and moving into the UK directly. Gavin is upbeat. “The feedback from testing with our distribution partner

The existing Traction Air system installed on a DPS Haulage Ltd, Kenworth. There is no visible difference with the new system.

and our field testing has been incredibly positive, many of our existing clients are keen to adopt the new technology.” He’s quick to point out, though, that the new system does not make the existing system obsolete. “While we designed it for Europe, the new system meets all regulative requirements in New Zealand and Australia, so it will inevitably flow into our Australasian markets.

The existing equipment will always be available from TRT and will continue to be fully supported in all aspects.” Support for the new system is by way of a three-year/500,000km warranty on all electronics and pneumatics, and a 12-month warranty on wheel-end bearings and plumbing. All that needs to be done in terms of maintenance is to check the filters every 12 months. 

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You want it ‘Wheely Straight?’


heely Straight Limited is a heavy transport mobile wheel alignment and balancing business owned and operated by Zane Polkinghorne, who has more than 15 years experience in the industry. “I completed my automotive apprenticeship and worked at a country workshop in Maungaturoto for six years. Looking for another challenge, I made the move down to Auckland and become a qualified diesel mechanic, specialising in heavy transport.” Zane says over the years he noticed that many people were not aware of the benefits of regular wheel alignments or did not always have time to take their vehicles to a workshop to have this done. “When I was working on light passenger vehicles, whenever a steering or suspension component was replaced or even new tyres were fitted, a wheel alignment was carried out. Yet I found that when the same repairs and work were done in the heavy transport industry, customers would seldom get wheel alignments done due to time restrictions and other operational constraints. “And before they know it, it’s too late and Zane Polkinghorne


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

their new tyres need premature replacing – not to mention the extra amount spent on fuel, as out of alignment trucks have higher fuel consumption.” This is where Wheely Straight Limited comes in, as they offer a mobile wheel alignment service and can visit customers at a time that suits them and their business. “I am based out of two locations, covering from Auckland to Whangarei and anywhere in between,” says Zane. “I offer the most affordable prices around and can work at any time that suits the customer.” Wheely Straight Limited offers mobile wheel alignment and balancing for trucks, trailers, buses and motorhomes. Services include pre-alignment checks to ensure that all steering and suspension components are up to the required safety standards; front axle wheel alignment; rear axle wheel alignment; trailer axle wheel alignment; wheel balancing, and tyre pressure checks.  Phone Wheely Straight Limited on 021 201 6959 or fill in your details on the contact page on their website:




Tap to go Story and photos by Howard Shanks

One electrical system with two voltages is not uncommon. To make it all work the vehicle needs a series-parallel switch between them. But the truck will go nowhere if the switch can’t, well, switch.


recently took an old W Model Kenworth for a short run. The old girl hadn’t been started for ages and, needless to say, it needed a little coaxing into life. With the master switch turned, my joy and excitement quickly disappeared when I turned the key and there was the click-click sound of a flat battery as the starter tried to wind over the old 400hp CAT under the hood. I sat for a few moments leaning on the steering wheel looking out over the bonnet, and a few old memories came flooding back of the days when I drove one like this. One memory in particular

stuck in my mind… I’d volunteered to do a run north for a mate. A few days later, late at night in a parking bay between Mount Isa and Camooweal, I slid into the seat, turned the key and hit the starter. Nothing! I hit it again. Still nothing. Even today, auto-electricians are fairly scarce around midnight and mobile phones are not conducive to communicating your needs in this particular area. I remember thinking that night, ‘if I’m going to get back on the road tonight there’s no alternative other than to get out into the two-inch-deep

The basic schematic layout of a 12/24V series-parallel switch.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

dust and fix the problem myself ’. After all, it’s what most blokes did in the bush back then. The yellow Caterpillar sprang to life about half an hour later. The reason the truck wouldn’t start was because the solenoid in the series-parallel switch had jammed. The fine tolerances inside the solenoid show little forgiveness for the entry of foreign particles, especially dust, and there’s plenty of that out here in Australia. This type of switch is not found on many modern trucks. European vehicles run 24V systems so don’t require it, and most US machines now have 12V starters. While becoming a rarity, there are still many older models on the road that have them and some customers specifically specify them because they prefer the rapid cranking of a 24V starter. Understanding how they work may just help to get you mobile again should you ever happen


Circuit diagram of a typical series-

Circuit diagram of a typical series-parallel

parallel switch completing a series

switch completing a parallel connection

connection between batteries for 24V

between batteries for normal operation

A typical switch installation.

starter motor operation.

of vehicle electrical equipment at 12V.

to experience a similar situation. The best description of a seriesparallel switch is that it is a mechanism that allows for two 12V batteries to be linked in series (forming 24V) for starting, while also linked in parallel (12V) for charging. When batteries are connected via the positive on one battery and the negative on the next battery, the value of the two batteries is added together. Therefore, two 12V batteries connected in series equal 24V of output. When the positive terminal of one battery is connected to the positive terminal of another battery with the same applying to the negative terminals, it is connected in parallel. This basically means that if you have two 13-plate 12V batteries you effectively have one 26-plate 12V battery when they are connected in this fashion. To obtain 24V and connect the batteries to the starter motor a seriesparallel switch is used. So, this old girl had a 24V starter motor to get the Cat cranking into life, and the rest of the truck’s electronics ran on 12V. A series-parallel switch consists of four sets of contacts that we’ll call, 1, 2, 3 and 4. Contacts 1 and 3 and contacts 2 and 4 are connected, as they are spring loaded. When the starter key is activated the series-parallel solenoid coil is energised and the plunger moves, disconnecting contact 1 from 3 and

contact 2 from 4. This connects the two batteries in series with the starter motor. At the same time, the starter motor solenoid circuit is closed by the second set of contacts 3 and 4, and the starter motor rotates. When the key is released, the batteries return to a parallel connection as the series-parallel switch contacts 1 and 2 are opened and contacts 1 and 3 and 2 and 4 are reconnected. The two batteries are charged in parallel by a 12V alternator and supply the accessories at 12V. So, how did I get the jammed solenoid free? First, I had to determine the cause behind the truck’s inability to start, as it was fine until the attempt to leave the parking bay. Thorough checks of the batteries, ensuring all leads were firmly fastened to the terminals, and a check of the starter motor, ensuring its connections were secure, were the first steps. There was plenty of power as the lights shone brightly on all three trailers.

The next check was for broken wires that may have caused a short. The series-parallel switch was quite warm and made a clunking sound similar to a car with a flat battery. It sounded as though it was trying to work, suggesting that the starting problem was connected to the switch. Once determining that it was a jammed solenoid, I proceeded to give the switch a few swift blows with a ball-peen hammer. I doubt that you’ll find this procedure recommended in any workshop or manufacturer’s instruction manuals. On the side of the road in the middle of the night, however, this bush methodology will more often than not get you on your way again as it frees the dust that accumulates inside the switch. The offending switch was removed upon arrival at our destination and serviced by a fully qualified auto electrician, who confirmed that dust had indeed caused the problem. 

Howard Shanks is a qualified fitter, machine operator and truck driver, and a leading technical transport journalist. His working knowledge of the industry and mechanical components have seen high demand for his services as a technical advisor and driver trainer. You can contact Howard on if you’d like him to explore a tech topic for you.

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019



Take a seat, but not just any seat… Story by Russell Walsh

You may think you’re sitting pretty, but that’s not always the case…


ot that long ago, little thought was given to designing a truck seat. These were often put together to suit the stature of drivers in the truck’s country of origin. If you were lucky the seat may have come with a basic slide arrangement to move the entire seat back and forth – otherwise, one size had to fit all. Problems with seeing out the front window were solved by sitting on a cushion. Thankfully those days are behind us; truck manufacturers and aftermarket seat suppliers now spend hundreds of thousands of dollars annually researching optimum designs for seats. Called Repetitive Drive Injury (RDI), research has clearly drawn a link between how we sit in a vehicle, the length of time we do this, and the number of work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Truck driving is high on the list of occupations where, due to the nature of the work environment, these disorders are common. They typically show up as back pain (especially in the lower back), stress, a stiff neck, and sore shoulders. Fatigue can also be linked to poor seating. A good seat must recognise that each person is a different size and shape and should try to accommodate these variances as well as possible. When adjusted correctly, a good seat will allow the driver to reach the pedals and other critical controls easily and without the need to stretch their arms or legs. Gauges and warning lights should be easily seen and the driver should have a clear view through the front and side windows and to the rear view mirrors – again without stretching. A seat must be comfortable for the driver to sit in. Along with these points, a good seat will isolate the driver from external and truck-induced vibrations. Seats must also be easy to get onto and off from without strain or any danger of slipping. Along with many other aspects of the trucking industry, seat design and specification, and its link to injury prevention, should be one of the things recognised in the workplace health and safety plan.

What the law says

For heavy vehicles, including motorhomes, a seat that is fitted as original equipment during the vehicle’s manufacture and prior to any modification is deemed to comply with New Zealand’s seat rules. If the seat is replaced by another seat that can be fitted to the vehicle without any modification


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

to the seat mounts, then that seat is also deemed to comply. If a replacement or new seat requires the original seat mountings, such as where it bolts onto the floor, to be modified, or if it requires new seat mountings, then the modification must be certified by a specialist heavy vehicle certifier with the HVEC ‘chassis’ category. If you are replacing a seat that does not have seat belts attached to it, and the replacement seat does, then the seat mountings must be certified as suitable for seatbelts. This is a requirement even if the replacement seat can be fitted to the original seat mountings without modification. And remember, just because a truck does not have to be fitted with seat belts, it does not mean they don’t have to be worn. If seatbelts are fitted they must be worn unless the driver has an exemption! Removing seatbelts to avoid wearing them is not an option.





Ensuring integrity is not compromised

After the driver themselves, the seat is the most important piece of equipment in the vehicle. When OEMs fit seats into their vehicles they are bolted to the floor or onto specialist brackets for an important reason. That is so that if the vehicle is in an accident, the seat does not come out of the floor; if this were to happen, seatbelt or no seatbelt, the result would not be a good one. Often, when seats are replaced in vehicles, the same brand or model of seat is not fitted. This is essentially illegal. What you are doing is toying with the engineering integrity of the floor to seat connection. If a substitute brand of seat is fitted instead of the OEM model, then the vehicle must be recertified by a registered engineer with the appropriate supporting paperwork. This extends to the seat, the mounting bracket [which must be certified from the manufacturer], and the installation. “We always recommend replacing seats like-for-like if possible. However, if you choose to go down another route, make sure that you do your due diligence and all products supplied are certified, as well as the install, in order to stay as safe as possible on the road,” says Callum McKendry of Geemac Trading (NZ) Limited. Geemac is the local distributor of Isringhausen (ISRI) drivers’ seats, which are standard equipment in the majority of trucks sold in New Zealand and Australia. The New Zealand bus and coach sectors are also big customers of ISRI, and Geemac is also the preferred supplier for KiwiRail. Geemac also owns subsidiary company Seats (NZ) Limited, making it New Zealand’s largest driver and operator seat supplier. 






Be one with your tyres, and the road will be one with you.



0800 825 838


Alcohol and us Story by Mike Isle • Photos supplied

To prevent or to penalise drinkdriving… The government, transport authorities and police have tried both strategies. Both work. Yet there will still be drivers who get behind the wheel of a 44-tonner after a few beers. Is there a third-string strategy to add to the combatting arsenal?


here is: Alcohol&Me is a programme, instigated by a brewery, that is achieving amazing success in changing the relationship Kiwis have with alcohol. Since it began in 2012 as a Lion Breweries’ in-house programme aimed at helping Lion staff make informed decisions about alcohol, 86 companies have now used Alcohol&Me, and 51,000 people have been through the programme. Tracking studies show that 97% of people who attended the workshops would recommend it to others. The public online format, which is just one of formats offered by Alcohol&Me, has an average of 500 visitors a day. Alcohol&Me’s programme manager Jude Walter says the

object of the programme is to help people make informed decisions about how they drink, empowering people to stay safe and sociable when drinking alcohol. “It is non-judgemental, and it is not about getting people to drink less or not drink at all. It is about giving them easy access to the best-in-class information they need to make the choices that are right for them. “We want to help as many adult New Zealanders as we can to make smarter drinking choices. We give them quality information they can trust, without an overlay of any kind of guilt complex,” Jude says. The workplace programme comprises three formats, the first of which is a three-hour facilitated workshop that Alcohol&Me describes as perfect for organisations looking for new and different ways to bring their alcohol policy to life. Jude says it is extremely valuable for anyone working with machinery and/or driving company vehicles, and is perfect for trucking firms. The second format is a one-hour introductory quiz, an interactive team-based session that provides participants with key factors surrounding the significance of a standard drink and how alcohol affects the body and mind. The format is often incorporated into a company’s wellbeing retreat or programme and gives businesses a cost-effective way to proactively engage and support their employees. The third format is online and enables participants to extract the key learnings from Alcohol&Me as time allows.

Setting the standard At the centre of much of alcohol education is understanding what a ‘standard drink’ is – after all “one more drink won’t hurt me” really depends on what that drink is and how much time has passed since the previous drink. The human liver can


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

only process one standard drink per hour and there is no way to speed up this process. If the label on your drink of choice says 1.3 standard drinks, that means it is going to take your body 1.3 hours to process the alcohol in that bottle, glass or can.

Above: A guide to understanding the ‘standard drink’.


Jude Walter: “We have sufficient flexibility in the programme to give each company the programme they need delivered the way they want.”

It comprises five online modules, each three to 12 minutes in length. Jude says it is perfect for organisations wanting to incorporate alcohol understanding into their nationwide health and safety programmes without taking people off the job for long periods of time. She adds that the formats are presented in a fun and digestible way. They draw on expert information from people in New Zealand and around the world, including doctors, nutritionists and social anthropologists. “We also peer-review the programme every year to make sure it remains relevant and includes the latest research. We pride ourselves in having a quality programme, and we want to keep it that way,” she says. Jude knows that there may be logistical questions from some companies, particularly from transport operators for whom taking their drivers off the road, even for a short time, is the last thing they want. “No two companies are the same and we have sufficient flexibility in the programme to give each company the programme they need delivered the way they want – that best suits them. It is just a matter of talking to us.”  Jude Walter can be contacted on 027 286 3961, email Alcohol&Me also has a public website that is free to all New Zealanders, so check it out at

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October 2019



Accredited service providers vs non-accredited service providers


hen it comes to hiring a service provider, I always do two things: I check their track record and check their certifications and accreditations. While the first one is a no-brainer for most C-suite decision-makers, the second is often overlooked. Accredited professionals bring systems, processes and technologies to work that have been checked and vetted by independent, third-party organisations, governing bodies and other experts in their fields. Let me ask you this: if your kid’s car needed new brakes would you prefer a mechanic or an MTAcertified mechanic? If your home needed rewiring would you prefer a handyman or a certified master electrician? Using accredited professionals of any kind delivers long-term financial value as well as protecting a business and its reputation. The primary focus of a workplace drug-testing company should be on testing people and maintaining safe working environments. In our experience, when a workplace drug test fails, a business must deal with one of three outcomes: • A drug or alcohol affected employee remains on the job, increasing the risk of injury or even a death in the workplace. • A false test means a clean employee receives disciplinary action, and the company may be exposed to legal proceedings. • An incident has happened, and the test, tester, and the testing processes will not withstand a legal challenge.

Australia, everything it does is by the book and meets the necessary standards to ensure its tests, processes, and the technologies used to carry them out, deliver the best results in the industry. Accreditation means the delivery of industryleading testing, results, and a product that will hold up if lawyers get involved. At TDDA accreditation is taken extremely seriously and the association has urged government action for the regulation and accreditation of testers nationwide. There’s no room for low-grade, error-prone testing devices. There’s no room for poor policies that can expose a person to false testing results, breaches of privacy, and the potential for loss of work or income. There’s no room for cowboy operators in this industry, and businesses should avoid them – or risk financial and reputational damage. It’s worth noting that Rod Dale, group technical manager, TDDA, and Armin Kiani, chief toxicologist, TDDA-Omega Laboratories, were part of the New Zealand, Australian standards committee that updated the 2019 Detection of Drugs in Oral Fluids standard (AS/NZS 47602006) to the new 2019 version. TDDA is also happy to say that since the release of the new Oral Fluids standard in March 2019, it’s received a number of enquiries into the technology and how it can assist companies achieve better outcomes from their testing programmes. Accreditations and certifications equate to quality testing processes and reliable, accurate, ethical and competent drug testers who are committed to helping keep New Zealand workplaces safer. 

At TDDA accreditation is taken extremely seriously and the association has urged government action for the regulation and accreditation of testers nationwide. There’s no room for low-grade, errorprone testing devices.

No business wants to be in any of these situations, which is why any workplace drug testing company must be independently accredited by International Accreditation New Zealand (IANZ) under ISO 15189:2012 accreditation for workplace drug testing. If the company also operates across the Tasman, it should also be certified in Australia under National Association of Testing Authorities, Australia (NATA). The ISO 15189:2012 accreditation, which is externally audited, also denotes that the medical laboratories meet rigorous national and international standards in quality management and competence. What all that means is that when a workplace drug tester screens for drugs and takes a sample in New Zealand or


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

By Kirk Hardy, CEO TDDA (The Drug Detection Agency) TDDA has ISO 15189:2012 accreditation for workplace drug testing (see NATA and IANZ websites for further detail). TDDA is a drugand alcohol-testing leader with more than 64 operations throughout Australasia.


The Safety MAN Road Safety Truck recently joined forces with Fire Emergency NZ, Police and St John Ambulance to hold a road safety and emergency response awareness day at Kaiapoi High School. It was a fantastic opportunity for students to watch a live demonstration of what happens after there has been an accident on the road. One actor was dead, one seriously injured and the other one was arrested as they blew over the legal alcohol limit to drive. The area was littered with items from the car. Emergency response teams had to cut the doors and roof off the crashed vehicle to get one person out of car. It was a very life-like an eye-opening experience for the students, many of whom were beginning to drive and need to be aware of the consequences of dangerous and reckless driving. For the rest of the day the students attended workshops around road safety, this included each group participating in the Share the Road with Big Trucks program. The feedback was fantastic throughout the day and it was great to be part of such an important awareness program. It would be great to see these days planned for every high school around the country.


Talley’s recently had their Fleet Safety Day at their premises in Fairview. This was a great opportunity for the Safety MAN to attend and be transformed into a classroom for the day’s workshops. Inside the Safety MAN trailer, Rachel from Fit for Duty and Tania from Innovative in Vehicle Safety Solutions both ran workshops. The Talley’s drivers also went through the Healthy Truck Driver program which raised awareness about common health issues that can affect their driving.

WWW.ROADSAFETYTRUCK.CO.NZ Making heavy vehicle fleet management easy for you



We all make mistakes


e all make mistakes. They can be insignificant – leaving a form in the van so the job can’t be invoiced quickly, or huge – running over a person with the forklift. The job of business owners and managers is to have systems in place to capture these mistakes so that they don’t have a negative outcome. Workers don’t intentionally make mistakes. Often, they happen because it is the easiest way to do the job. Sometimes it is a lack of knowledge or too much complacency. Consider the following situations: 1) A mechanic is working under a truck. He asks the truck driver to start the truck. The driver does so from outside the cab. The truck is in gear and runs over the mechanic, seriously injuring him. 2) A worker wants to drive a forklift through the place a truck is parked. He starts the truck to move it and a mechanic jumps out from under it.

What could have been done to prevent the injury?

The obvious things are: Remove the keys from the truck, putting them in a secure place or even the mechanic’s pocket; one could put a ‘do not use’ tag on the keys if they are in the ignition; always starting a vehicle from the driver’s seat; making sure that there is no one under or behind the vehicle when it is started. Each of these precautions creates a system to arrest the mistakes people make. The best is to ensure that no one is under the vehicle. The other options still have space to fail, and using two or more of these reduces the fail space where mistakes matter. People will take the path of How can Safewise help? least resistance. This needs to be We work with organisations that acknowledged, the paths must be need more health and safety recognised, and workers must be knowledge, or more time, than protected by the systems that have been they have in house. For more put in place.  information, check the website

What mistakes were made that caused these incidents? • The truck is in gear. Sometimes it is necessary to take the handbrake off when working on a vehicle. It is likely to be left in gear so it won’t move. • The truck is started from outside the cab. The truck driver would have seen that the truck was in gear if he had been in the cab. • The mechanic is under the truck when it is started in both situations. In the second scenario the forklift operator doesn’t know he is there. • The forklift operator is distracted by his task and doesn’t think about why the truck is there. 23031 DANI1 TRUCKING AD.pdf


Tracey Murphy is the owner and director of Safewise Limited, a health and safety consultancy. She has more than 10 years’ experience working with organisations from many different industries. Tracey holds a Diploma in Health and Safety Management and a Graduate Diploma in Occupational Safety and Health. She is a graduate member of New Zealand Institute of Safety Management and is the Waikato branch manager.

3:12:58 PM

Danielle L. Beston Barrister At Law Log Book & Driving Hours Transport Specialist Work Licences Nationwide Road User Charges Contributor to New Zealand Trucking ‘Legal Lines’ Column Telephone: 64 9 379 7658 mobile: 021 326 642 Referral Through Solicitor Required and Arranged


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019





Vicarious liability and health and safety (Part 2)


have been asked by a reader to discuss the relationship between the chain of responsibility provisions in the Land Transport Act 1998 (LTA) and the obligations on employers in the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA). Last month I gave a summary of the chain of responsibility principles and this month I will be focusing on the interface between this legislation and the new health and safety laws.

Health and safety

The HSWA imposes obligations on multiple duty holders including employers, principals, employees, and persons in control of a place of work to take “all practicable steps” to keep people safe from hazards in or near the workplace. These duties are framed around a “person conducting a business or undertaking”, which includes employers, principals and suppliers, but does not include employees. The primary duty of the new act is to ensure “so far as is reasonably practicable” the health and safety of people in the workplace. With this comes increased expectations around compliance requirements because businesses must now have systems in place to identify risk and take action to proactively manage it.

Reasonably practicable

“Reasonably practicable” means that which is, or was at the particular time, reasonably able to be done, taking into account relevant matters including: • the likelihood of the hazard or the risk occurring; • the degree of harm that might result from the hazard or the risk; • what the person concerned knows, or ought reasonably to know, about the hazard or risk and ways of eliminating or minimising it; • the availability and suitability of ways to eliminate or minimise the risk; and • after assessing the extent of the risk and the available ways of eliminating or minimising the risk, the cost associated with available ways of eliminating or minimising the risk, including whether the cost is grossly disproportionate to the risk.

Interface with chain of responsibility provisions

Employers are obligated under the HSWA to take all practicable steps to keep people safe from hazards in or near the workplace. This means they must think about the ways in which someone could be harmed and take action to do what is reasonably practicable to ensure the safety of that person. It follows that employers who are responsible for employees who drive vehicles while working must ensure that their employees are able to drive and operate their vehicles safely. Concerns that have been identified within the transport industry include fatigue, fleet management, and a continuing high risk of accidents in loading zones.

Playing fair

So, what if one’s employer does not seem to be abiding by their legal obligations? If you, as the employee, consider that you are likely to be caused serious harm, then you are entitled to refuse to do the work. The matter must be discussed with the employer as soon as practicable and then both parties are required to act in good faith to resolve it. If the matter is not resolved and the employee has reasonable grounds for continuing to refuse to do the work, then they can still refuse. However, while the matter is being resolved the employee must do any other work that is reasonably requested by their employer and within the scope of their employment agreement. A dispute over an employee’s refusal to do work they believe is unsafe is considered an ‘employment relationship problem’ and can be resolved using the employment mediation services available under the Employment Relations Act 2000. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment provides free mediation services, but if the dispute cannot be resolved in this way, the next step is for the Employment Relations Authority to formally investigate issues and decide what the most appropriate course of action could be. Employees have the right to challenge a written decision of the Employment Relations Authority in the Employment Court if they are unhappy with it. For more free employment information, go to, or call 0800 20 90 20. 

Duty of due diligence

Under the HSWA, directors and senior managers will have a positive duty to exercise due diligence to ensure that persons conducting a business or undertaking comply with their duties or obligations. This will include taking reasonable steps to be knowledgeable in health and safety law, in the operations of the person conducting a business or undertaking, and the nature of the attendant hazards or risks. In addition to this there is an obligation to ensure that the person conducting a business or undertaking has the appropriate resources and processes to discharge their duty and to receive and evaluate information regarding incidents, hazards, and risks, as well as responding in a timely way.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

Please note that this article is not a substitute for legal advice and if you have a particular matter that needs to be addressed, you should consult with a lawyer. Danielle Beston is a barrister who specialises in transport law and she can be contacted on (09) 379 7658 or

Danielle Beston

021 326 642.



ir conditioning can be a real pain in the proverbial when it stops working in your cab. The situation with this operator left him hot, bothered and losing money on vehicle downtime not to mention the cost of servicing. After about hour, his air conditioning would stop working. Initially, in the workshop everything seemed fine. The unit’s refrigerant and oils were recovered and replaced with the correct amounts, and a running A/C system pressure check was carried out without issue.The next day the driver rang complaining the unit stopped working after 40 minutes. It took a second visit to the workshop for a de-gas and re-gas. Again, three days later the same issue arose. The workshop called in

AECS technical support and with the help of one of AECS’s engineers, the workshop ran tests, which again resulted in normal results. Every time the gas was recovered it was weighed and each time the same amount recovered, so a gas leak was not the issue. The 2006 Isuzu C Series was sent on a small threehour drive and hooked up as soon as it returned to the workshop. Under AECS guidance, questions were asked about the TX valve (aka the thermal expansion valve). Along with the unit’s compressor, the valve had recently been replaced by another workshop. The workshop involved had no formal training, which illustrates why it’s important to choose a workshop with trained technicians.

Knowing the TX valve and compressor had already been replaced, we suggested the workshop look for another blockage or maybe a crushed pipe that would create similar symptoms. A few minutes later we received the following photograph. A pipe was kinking, causing an artificial restriction. It did not show up immediately because it needed to be warm before it kinked and finally collapsed. The pipe had earlier been replaced with

a specification of hose that was not fit for purpose, and the problems was solved by replacing it with an original part. If you or your company have technicians, you need work with the industry’s best. If you’re an operator, ensure you’re going to an AECS trained workshop. For more information, call our team 06 874 9077 or email


Good business policy will improve road safety outcomes


ew Zealand saw the worst road toll in in over a decade during 2018, with close to 400 deaths and more than 12,000 serious injuries. Yet New Zealand is not alone. Globally nearly 1.25 million people die in road crashes each year. Some of the contributing factors in the road toll are inappropriate speed for the conditions, drug- and alcoholimpaired driving, fatigue, distracted driving, poor road condition or design, vehicle faults, and a lack of driver skills and knowledge. Some of these factors are disturbing and are completely within the driver’s control. Of the total road fatalities, over 30% of the vehicle occupants were not wearing a seat belt, 11% were distracted drivers (predominantly smartphone use), another 30% were under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, and inappropriate speed was a contributing factor in 25% of deaths. Trucking operators have an obligation, under the Health & Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA), to protect their employees while they are working, even if this means protecting them from themselves. This includes while they are out on the road. A work-related vehicle is considered a place of work and employees who are mobile are covered by the HSWA. One of the best steps that can be taken towards improving the safety of employees on the road is to implement a safe driving policy, which should be linked to the company’s employment or subcontractor agreements. This will help to drive a road safety culture within the business. The policy should be defined by two key objectives: to ensure that employees and subcontractors demonstrate safe, efficient driving skills and other good road safety habits at all times; and to maintain all vehicles in a safe, clean and roadworthy condition at all times to ensure the maximum safety of the drivers, occupants and all other road users. The policy should include a code of conduct that states the business’s expectations for employees and subcontractors to comply with all legislation, and to be conscious of road safety, and the expectation that they will demonstrate safe driving and other good road safety habits. It should also list the following actions that will be viewed as serious breaches of conduct, for which dismissal may be a consequence: drinking or being under the influence of drugs while driving; driving while disqualified or not correctly licensed; reckless or dangerous driving causing death or injury; failure to stop after a crash; acquiring demerit points leading to licence suspension; and any actions that warrant the suspension of a licence. Every driver is responsible and accountable for their own actions, including the following: ensuring they maintain a current licence for the class of vehicle they are driving, and that it is always carried with them; immediately notifying their employer if their licence is suspended, cancelled, or has limitations placed on it; always behaving with the highest level of professional conduct; carrying out regular pre-trip inspections of their vehicle, and immediately reporting any


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

faults; complying with all legislation and rules when on duty; always complying with the code of conduct; always maintaining speed appropriate to the conditions, including operating within the speed limit; always wearing a seatbelt, and never using a mobile phone while driving; never tailgating other drivers; being aware of their vehicle’s blind spots; always complying with the worktime and logbook rules; ensuring that their load is secured in accordance with the truck loading code; immediately reporting any infringements, near misses or crashes. Employers have responsibilities that include: • Ensuring that all vehicles under their control are well maintained and legally compliant, and safe to operate on the road at all times. • Fitting all vehicles with the appropriate safety equipment, including fire extinguisher and first aid kit, and ensuring that drivers are properly trained in the use of this equipment. • Following up on all reported maintenance issues. • Ensuring that all drivers are always legally compliant. • Ensuring that all drivers are trained as safe drivers, and are trained to perform their duties. • Ensuring that drivers’ schedules allow them enough time to comply with the worktime and logbook rules. • Recognising the signs of driver fatigue. • Ensuring that all vehicles are fit for the purpose intended. • Ensuring that all drivers have a thorough induction into the company’s road safety policies and procedures. • Putting drivers through a truck rollover prevention programme. • Updating drivers regularly on road safety, fatigue, and health and safety issues. To reinforce good, safe driving behaviour, it is also important those employers: • Don’t pay speeding or other infringement fines. • Lead by good example. • Have zero-tolerance for using mobile phones when driving, or not wearing seatbelts. • Encourage a healthy lifestyle (perhaps provide free bottles of water and fruit at workplaces). All companies should regularly review their safe driving policy to ensure that it is supporting the business’s key road safety objectives. 

NZ Trucking Association can be contacted on 0800 338 338 or

by Dave Boyce, NZTA chief executive officer



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300 LITRE DIESELPOWER • 4m wiring harness with alligator clips • 12V DieselPower self-priming pump • 4m of ¾” delivery hose with swivel and crimped fittings • High quality auto shut-off nozzle • 30 min duty cycle, 30 min on/off









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600L DIESELPRO TRANSFER UNIT • 12V PIUSI self-priming pump • High quality auto shut-off nozzle • 5m of ¾” delivery hose with swivel and crimped fittings • Tank bottom 8mm brass inserts for bolt down mounting to a tray, skid or platform




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Who is actually fleecing you at the pump?


o you feel as though you are being ‘fleeced’ at the fuel pump, as the Prime Minister has recently suggested? With prices for unleaded petrol as high as $2.20 and diesel above $1.55, it is highly likely that families and business alike are feeling the pinch. However, the question needs to be asked – who is it who is actually doing the fleecing? The recent draft report from the Commerce Commission’s market study was interesting and came up with some good suggestions around increasing access to terminals and providing retailers with greater contractual freedom to make it easier to switch between suppliers. However, probably the most telling aspect of the report was what the Commission was forbidden to consider: the massive impact of government taxation on the price of fuel. As much as 44 percent, or 97c on $2.20 per litre, of unleaded 91 is a combination of fuel excise, ACC levies, Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) levy, and the Auckland regional fuel tax. When you put all these taxes against the 34c per litre that is the average gross margin for fuel companies, the question over who is actually doing the fleecing becomes quite an interesting one. Remember, this is a government that has added around 20c in taxes to a litre of 91 in only two years in office. The whole debate around the New Zealand fuel market gets even more complicated if you take a step back and consider what the government’s overall strategy is. Generally, when it comes to roads, cars, trucks and the use of fossil fuels, this government has been doing its best to discourage their use and to incentivise people towards electric cars. It has refused to provide funding for new roads, prohibited future exploration for oil and gas, and introduced a low-emissions ‘feebate’ scheme that will penalise lowincome families and that, Treasury concluded, will make little discernible difference to New Zealand’s emissions. But by commissioning the fuel market study and then proclaiming that motorists are being ‘fleeced’, the Prime Minister has effectively defended users of internal combustion engine vehicles, created the environment to push fuel prices down, and helped to preserve the dominance of fossil fuels into the future. It’s a bit confusing to say the least. The other big question outside the bounds of the Commerce Commission study must also be what the country is actually getting for the high level of fuel tax and road user charges (RUCs). You see, the government’s political licence to inflict extra taxation on motorists and road transport operators traditionally

comes from the public’s knowledge that the money is reinvested in the provision of better, more modern transport infrastructure. People on the whole can accept an increase at the pump, or to their RUCs, if they know their investment is actually going towards improving their transport experience, alleviating congestion and making roads safer. The problem is that none of that is happening. Almost all new roading projects have been suspended or cancelled, the Auckland light rail project has been pushed back a number of years and Let’s Get Wellington Moving has resulted in a transport plan that will not fundamentally deal with the chokepoints that are at the heart of the city’s increasing congestion problems. Compare the situation here with what is happening in Sydney. In New Zealand, infrastructure debates are characterised by simplistic binary arguments of rail over roads or light rail over new motorway projects. This results in periods of almost complete inaction as everybody gets tied up in knots, which results in further strain on an already creaking infrastructure. By contrast, the New South Wales Government is doing it all. Major motorway projects like WestConnex and NorthConnex are currently taking place alongside a new light rail system and improvements to existing commuter rail services. There is also a second harbour tunnel project in the pipeline to further free up congestion from the city centre. Most New Zealand visitors would agree that Sydney already has reasonable transport infrastructure; however the city’s officials refuse to stand still and – through a combination of public funding, public-private partnerships and tolling – they are future-proofing the city for well into the 21st century. So, when the government releases the final fuel market study report later in the year and imposes a new set of rules to reduce fuel company margins, it’s worth considering just who is really fleecing who here. Is it fuel companies that have indeed increased their margins, or is it our government, which has significantly increased taxation on motorists yet made no discernible progress in providing the country with the transport infrastructure it so desperately needs? 

The whole debate around the New Zealand fuel market gets even more complicated if you take a step back and consider what the government’s overall strategy is.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

Nick Leggett chief executive officer



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New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

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Chemical Reaction The Sky’s Limit The Sky’sthe the Limit

International 9870-R8 Renault Lander 460.32 8x4Sky Roof 8x4 rigid Renault Lander 460.32 8x4 Operator: GR & ALtd, Lloyd-Jones Ltd Operator logistics Mount Maunganui Operator Roadex Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Engine: Cummins X15 458kW (615hp) Driver Frank Richards Driver Frank Richards Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Transmission: Eaton 22E318B UltraShift MXP 18-speed Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Transmission Rear axles: Optidriver Meritor 46-160 Transmission Optidriver Rear axles Renault P2191 with NZ hubLtd reduction Body: Fruehauf Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 Trailer: Fruehauf NZ Ltd 5-axle Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 crane Offset steerers, stainless steel drop visor, Features: Palfinger Palfinger crane Features brakes, Bluetooth, fridge Features Disc Disc brakes, Bluetooth, alloy wheels Operation: Dura-Bright Dura-Bright alloy wheels General freight run Christchurch to Operation roofing material around Operation Carting Carting roofing material around Invercargill the Bay of Plenty area the Bay of Plenty area

Twin TwinTippers Tippers Renault Lander 460.32 8x4 G500 for Girvan Renault Lander 460.32 8x4 Operator Roadex logistics Scania G500 XT 6x4 rigid Ltd, Mount Maunganui Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Driver Frank Richards Driver Frank Richards Operator: 0Xi11, Girvan Pastoral Co Ltd Engine 460hp Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Transmission Optidriver Engine: Transmission OptidriverScania 373kW (500hp) Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Transmission: Opticruise AMT Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Truck body deck with front mounted PK12000 Rear axles: Flat Scania hub reduction Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 Palfinger crane Scania air Rear suspension: Palfinger crane Features Disc brakes, Bluetooth, Body: Fruehauf NZ Ltd dropside deck Features Disc brakes, Bluetooth, alloy guard, wheelsstainless steel tool Stone Features: Dura-Bright Dura-Bright alloy wheels Operation roofing Operation Carting Carting roofing material around lockermaterial around Bay ofGeneral Plenty area Operation: the the Bay of Plenty area duties and stock crate at

times in and around Central Otago

FuelHauling HaulingFH FH Fuel ‘Kruzen’ Kaikoura Renault Lander 460.32 8x4 Renault Lander 460.32 8x4

UD PK-16 280 4x2 rigid Operator Roadex Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Operator logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Driver Frank Richards Driver Richards Operator: Frank Kaikoura Transport Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Engine 460hp Engine: 0Xi11, GH7 208kW (280hp) Transmission OptidriverAllison 3060P fully automatic 6-speed Transmission Optidriver Transmission: Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Rear axlesSuspension: Renault P2191 hub reduction Rear UD with spring Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 Truck body Flat deck with frontSands mounted PK12000 Deck: Bruce Nationwide Palfinger crane Palfinger crane Stock crate: Delta Stock Crates Features Disc Disc brakes, Bluetooth, Features brakes, Bluetooth, 2-deck sheep/1-deck cattle Features: Dura-Bright Dura-Bright alloy wheels alloy wheels Operation: Stock movements in and around Operation Carting Carting roofing material around Operation roofing material around Kaikoura, coast and surrounding area thethe Bay of Plenty area Bay of Plenty area Driver: William or Sarah Beazley Photo: Richard Lloyd

November 2015 104 New Zealand Trucking October 2019 10 10 NZNZ TRUCKING TRUCKING November 2015

ShootingStar Star Shooting RenaultLander Lander460.32 460.328x4 8x4 Renault

Climbing Cook

Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Driver Frank Richards Driver Frank Richards Scania P410 4x4 460hp rigid Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Engine 0Xi11, Transmission Optidriver Optidriver Transmission Operator: Cook Transport Ltd Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Engine: Scania 305kW (410hp) Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 Transmission: Opticruise AMT Palfinger crane Palfinger crane Rear axles: Disc brakes, Bluetooth, Scania Features Features Disc brakes, Bluetooth, Rear suspension: Scania Dura-Bright alloy wheels Dura-Bright alloy wheels Body: Beck material Engineering Operation Carting roofing material around Operation Carting roofing around Otago spreading operations Operation: the the Bay of Plenty area Bay ofCentral Plenty area

based out of Hyde


Pittar Quads 4 x Kenworth K200 8x4 & rigids Mellow Miles Michelin Men Operator: Renault Lander 460.32 Mark 8x4 Pittar Transport Ltd Engine: Cummins X15 Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Transmission: Roadranger 18-speed manual Driver Frank Richards Rear axles: Meritor with full cross locks Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Logging equip: Patchell Industries Transmission Optidriver Trailers: Patchell Industries Rear axles Renault P2191 with hub reduction Signage: Caulfield Signs & Graphics Truck body Flat deck with front mounted PK12000 Features: Palfinger crane Chrome air rams, grille bars, fridges Operation: Disc brakes, Logging duties central North Island Features Bluetooth, and East Coast Dura-Bright alloy wheels Drivers: Gareth, Jimmy, Warwick, David Operation Carting roofing material around Photo: Pittar the Bay of Bevan Plenty area

Carperton Argosy Dark Knight

Renault Lander 460.32 8x4

International 9870-R8 Sky Roof 8x4 rigid

Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Operator: Frank Richards Central Wool Transport Driver Engine: Cummins X15 458kW (615hp) Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Transmission: Transmission Optidriver Eaton UltraShift MXP Rear axles: Renault P2191 Meritor 46-160GP Rear axles with hub reduction Body: Jackson Truck body Flat deck with front Enterprises mounted PK12000 Trailer: Jackson Enterprises 5-axle Palfinger crane Features: Disc brakes, Chrome air rams, drop visor, stainless Features Bluetooth, steel tool lockers, offset steerers, stone Dura-Bright alloy wheels Operation Carting roofing guardmaterial around Plentyand area Operation: the Bay ofWool general North Island-wide


Clean Lines Whiteline Mercedes-Benz Arocs 3258 8x4 rigid Superb Super Liner Operator: Whiteline Ltd Partnership Engine: Mercedes-Benz Euro 6 16-litre 432kW Renault Lander 460.32 8x4

(580hp) Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Transmission: G330 12-speed PowerShift Driver Frank Richards Rear axles: Mercedes-Benz Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Rear suspension: Mercedes-Benz Transmission Optidriver Timaru & Graphix RearSignage: axles Renault P2191 withSigns hub reduction Body: Warren binsPK12000 Truck body Flat deck with frontauger mounted Trailer: Warren auger bins Palfinger crane Features: Disc brakes, Open top bins with air operated roll-over Features Bluetooth, Dura-Brightcovers alloy wheels Operation: Carting roofing Stock feed deliveries Operation material around throughout central the Bay of North Plenty Island area Driver: Robb Adamson Photo: Andrew Geddes

Zac Brausch

Dew’s Jewel McNeill Masterpiece

Renault Lander 460.32 8x4

International 9870-R8 Day cab 8x4 rigid

Operator Roadex logistics Ltd, Mount Maunganui Operator: Frank Richards McNeill Distribution Driver Engine: Cummins X15 458kW (615hp) Engine 0Xi11, 460hp Transmission: Transmission Optidriver Roadranger 20918B 18-speed manual Rear axles:Renault P2191 Meritor Rear axles with46-160 hub reduction Body: Cowan Truck body Flat deck with frontTrailers mounted PK12000 Trailer: Cowan Trailers 5-axle Palfinger crane Features: Disc brakes, FullBluetooth, factory aero kit, stainless steel visor, Features steel tool lockers Dura-Brightstainless alloy wheels Operation material around Operation: Carting roofing Wood chip, bulk products and timber the Bay of throughout Plenty area the South Island


Mark Wilson

Making heavy vehicle fleet management easy for you

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New Zealand Trucking October 105 11 November 2015 2019 NZ TRUCKING

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ RUNNING ON SCR?... new kiwi bodies & trailers New Zealand Trucking brings you New Kiwi Bodies & Trailers. Bodies and trailers are expected to last twice as long as trucks. What’s more, there’s new technology and advanced design features showing up almost every month. New Zealand has a rich heritage of body and

trailer building and we’re proud to showcase some recent examples of Kiwi craftsmanship every month. If you want a body or trailer included on these pages, send a photo, features and the manufacturer’s name to

Patchell Perfection Fresh out of the Patchell Stainless workshops is this clean new build for Owens. The 32,000-litre four-compartment tank trailer was built for task specification, and completed within 14 weeks of the order being placed. The immaculate presentation is a credit to all who had a hand in its construction. Features: ROR SL9 suspension and disc brake axle sets, Alcoa alloy wheels, Wabco EBS, 4” discharge pipe, valance walkway to top of tank with pneumatically activated handrails, Petersen LED lighting. Patchell Stainless

Neat TMC for Nichols A crisp build from the TMC Trailers workshops in Hornby is this new 6-axle curtainside B-train for G & T Nichols Ltd on contract to Mainfreight on general freight duties. Features: Hendrickson ZMD disc brake axles, Hendrickson TIREMAAX system, LED lighting, tool lockers and dunnage racks. TMC Trailers Ltd


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019


RAV raising the bar RAV Haulage Ltd from New Plymouth recently commissioned this custom build from the TMC Trailers team at Hornby. The 3-axle stepdeck transporter semi-trailer has been fitted with a clever full width over-centre rear ramp

to assist loading and unloading. Features: 19.5” ROR disc brake axles, dunnage racks, LED lighting, stainless steel tool locker. TMC Trailers Ltd

The Rock Viking A new build for Ford Brothers of Kaikoura (a division of Road Metals Group) is this smart looking combo straight out of Transport & General Transport Trailers workshops in Te Rapa. The unit has been constructed to handle the ‘hard stuff’, with Hardox-Rock Spec bodies including double-skinned tail doors.

Features: Edbro hoists, T&G integrated sliding cover system with manual winder, SAF 19.5 Intra-Disc suspension, Wabco braking system with SmartBoard and OptiLink, Hella combination LED tail lights and Petersen LED side lights. Transport & General Transport Trailers

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New Zealand Trucking

October 2019




CAT By Faye Lougher Photos by Faye Lougher and Bruce Geange

Look twice, yes it is a scratch-built scale model.

Look twice at the photos, as the commitment to detail in Bruce Geange’s scale replica Cat D8 is absolute purr-fection.


etired electrical inspector Bruce Geange’s love of model making began with Meccano as a child, but he’s also known for making incredibly detailed scratch-built models of steam engines and bulldozers. His 1” to 1’ scale manually controlled Caterpillar D8 tractor is based on a 1939/1940 crawler tractor and took 900 hours to research and build. It runs on lithium batteries and has five motors. Bruce tackled the tracks first, cutting the aluminium rectangle bar and T section extrusions to make the chain and track shoes. Each chain section has a left and right link. Jigs were made to allow each piece to end up the required size, with spacers machined from aluminium and track pins and collars from brass. After assembling the chain, collars were soldered to the ends of the track pins. Holes were drilled and tapped in the chain links and the track shoes secured with 8 BA bolts.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

To make the rear end of the tractor, brass angle pieces were machined square in the mill and brass sheet riveted to make up a square box-type section, with other pieces added to create the shape. Chassis rails were constructed from aluminium sheet and angle riveted together, and drawbar parts from brass and tinplate. Track rollers were machined from aluminium with four brass components making up each bearing. The rear driving sprockets were cut from a billet of aluminium with the teeth cut in the mill, and the braces for the track frames were fabricated from tinplate. The front idlers were machined from aluminium with brass strips added to each side of the spokes. The front yoke is made from tinplate and brass, as is the radiator, while the spring assembly and track adjuster are made from aluminium and brass. The seat frame is brass, tinplate and zinc panel sheet, and the armrests and seat back fibreglass. Bruce says a lot of research went into the making of the twin-drum LeTourneau winch. “The complete winch is built from brass and has a motor inside each winch drum. Each lever operates two micro switches that give a forward and reverse on each drum.” Bruce has also made a 1.5” to 1’ model of a Garrett 6-ton undertype steam lorry. He’d seen a chassis and taken photos,


Bruce Geange - It all started with childhood Meccano building skills.

but the model sat in his shed for 20-odd years until he was shown an accurate drawing. “That’s when I found all my mistakes and had to redo it. The person who builds something and never makes a mistake has built nothing!” Bruce’s workshop is enviable, as is his attention to detail.

“I photographed a full-size pressure gauge and scaled it down, using part of a biro for the gauge glass. The differential is off a WWII gun sight, and I cut the lioness plaque on the front from solid brass.” Bruce has been offered incredible sums of money for the D8 but says he will never sell it. 

Our own build – selecting a project By Carl Kirkbeck

Now the fun begins! Looking over the vast array of kitset trucks available and deciding on one is the first step. There are two approaches to building a model truck; the first is allow imagination be the inspiration and select a model that represents a rig you would like to own the life-size version of, the second is select one that can morph easily into an iconic rig currently on the road, or one you remember when growing up. We formed a shortlist of models off the shelf at our local hobby store we felt were worthy contenders. After some discussion within the team our decision was to attempt to replicate an iconic Kiwi rig from the 90s. This immediately culled some of the possibilities we had lined up, in turn making the decision that much easier. The truck we had in mind was a well-known Mercedes-Benz put on the road by Pilkington Glass’s automotive division and piloted by Ken Kirk. Based out of Lower Hutt, this truck was

The subject matter, Pilkington Automotive Glass Ken Kirk circa 1992.

Our project choice.

seen countrywide delivering windscreens, quarter lights and sunroofs to vehicle assembly plants that were prolific during this era. The Mercedes-Benz 2238 tractor unit kitset from Italeri is the ideal starting point for this project, being that it is already set out as a 6x4. There are a handful of minor discrepancies that we will come across along the way; these are to be expected and we will look at and address these as we progress. If you are starting out on your first model truck project then the Mercedes-Benz 2238 is the perfect first step. You will find it extremely easy to work with; being an Italeri brand kitset they are renowned for literally falling together on their own. Another reason to consider the Mercedes-Benz is the vast array of liveries from this period to choose from. Start with an image search on the web and you will discover the likes of Wilder Transport, Transpac, and Mogal Heavy Haulage that were all running the Mercs at that time – no shortage of possibilities.

New Zealand Trucking

October 2019




Hi Little Truckers! I must say I am loving this warm weather, and with daylight saving here, there is more time to enjoy it! Thank you to all of you who have sent me in some fantastic photos and even drawings you have done; excellent work team, please keep them coming, you just never know when you might see them printed right here! If you would like to share your photos, please send them to me at Thanks too for your entries in our quiz that went with ‘A day in the life of a trucker’ with Ben Briers from APL Direct Ltd. The lucky winner is James Andrew, age 12 from Mosgiel. Congratulations James, keep an eye out for the post, something cool is being sent to you.

The colouring competitions always draw a big response, and this month is a true Kiwi classic, a Fonterra Volvo milk tanker. We see them every day and so get stuck in and give us your best Fonterra tanker colouring job. Tell us where your tanker is from, it might be copy of one you’ve seen anywhere from Tarras to Takaka to Titoki, or it might be the one dad, mum, uncle, cousin, brother, or sister drives! Who knows? And yes, there’ll be prizes. Mike Woodfield is a great guy and a team manager from Fonterra at Longburn and Pahiatua. He’s given us a fabulous Fonterra merchandise pack. Likewise the amazing Lizz Swinbanks from Volvo Trucks New Zealand has also given us prizes. Thank you both so much. So get the crayons, pencils, or felt-tips out once again and get stuck in. Entries close on Sunday 10 November and the winner will be announced in the December issue. Send your entries to: Fonterra Volvo colouring comp


New Zealand Trucking

or: Fonterra Volvo colouring comp C/o New Zealand Trucking magazine P O Box 35 Thames 3540

October 2019


How good are you really? Outstanding we reckon.



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23 November 2019 Gisborne A&P Showgrounds Contact:


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

Turners Truck and Machinery Show

8 December 2019, Pukekohe Park Raceway Contact: Karen Black 021 837 233

The Mount Truck Show

18 January 2020, Tauranga Aerodrome, Jean Batten Drive, Tauranga Contact:

TMC Trailers Ltd Trucking Industry Show

20 and 21 March 2020 Canterbury Agricultural Park Christchurch Contact: Rebecca Dinmore 0800 338 338

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Spin rules A

nother tragic weekend on our roads and more families and friends have been left to grieve the loss of loved ones. How many more deaths will it take before some of our arrogant government ministers, their advisors and spin doctors, take responsibility for what is happening out there? They need to accept the condition of our state highway system is nothing short of third world; indeed main roads in some of these countries would put ours to shame. Stop the spin and just get on to to fixing them. The state of our roads is not necessarily the entire fault of the current administration, but this government’s actions in cutting or delaying vital roading projects means what we have now will be with us for many, many years to come. It is all very well spending millions of road-user dollars making the country’s roads safer for walking and cycling while providing inducements for people to use public transport – but this will not solve the carnage that takes place on our highway network. Spending billions of dollars on an Auckland rail system will do nothing to improve the roads in Waikato or around Taupo. Only investment across the entire roading network will really make a difference. To her credit, the Associate Minister of Transport, Julie Anne Genter, has earmarked some money for centreline barriers in some areas. However, many of the roads are not wide enough now, with narrow and crumbling shoulders, let alone wide enough to safely accommodate these barriers. As usual, after a tragedy of the most recent kind we have witnessed, the experts come out and say it’s the driver, that more driver training is required. Reduce the speed limit and increase the fines for using a cellphone, say others. The rest say we should provide even greater incentives for people to use public transport, cycle or walk. In some way they are all right. Driver training does help but, to be really effective, driver training must be consistent and apply to all. There is also evidence that suggests driver training can lead to complacency,


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019

a fact overlooked by the driver training advocates. Increasing the fines for exceeding the speed limit or using a cellphone when driving will only be effective if a good enforcement regime is in place to spot breaches. The way we drive is indicative of our culture of risk-taking and lack of respect for others. It’s in our DNA to push the boundaries whenever we can; it’s one way we can give the finger to the authorities. It has been this way since the first people settled here, so a massive change in our culture has to take place before any significant change in the way we drive can be seen. It’s an almost impossible task. I often wonder why it is that nobody has ever challenged the NZ Transport Agency about the state of the country’s highways in terms of health and safety. After all, it is a workplace for many of us and aren’t we all supposed to do whatever we can to safeguard the health and safety of others? A recent report I saw concluded that the state of our infrastructure was the cause of an increasing number of accidents involving cyclists. If this is so then the same conclusions must apply to vehicle-related crashes as well. Poor infrastructure is causing crashes, end of story! Perhaps it is to be then that my last ever journey in a motor vehicle will be along a road the condition of which is not much better than that which my great-grandparents would have met with when they first arrived in New Zealand in 1877.  The accidental trucker

As usual, after a tragedy of the most recent kind we have witnessed, the experts come out and say it’s the driver, that more driver training is required.

WWW.GOCLEAR.CO.NZ MEMBERS’ REVIEW Mills-Tui Ltd NZTTMF member since: 2018 One of the most enduring names in New Zealand truck-trailer building, Mill-Tui has been on its present site in Rotorua for more than 40 years. Founded by industry legend, H(ugh) Allen Mills, the company is now owned by the husband and wife pairing of Dean and Carey-lee Purves, with a staff of 26. Dean comes to the company with more than 20 years’ experience in the automotive, finance and heavy transport industries, most recently as general manager – heavy commercial for FleetPartners, and before that held senior management roles with TCL Isuzu, and Manheim. Carey-lee assists with the company’s administration. The company’s core business is still truck and trailer design and build, although these days it tends to focus on the timber and construction sectors along with a long-held staple for which it has international recognition – emergency services and defence vehicles. Many of the fire appliances built by Mills-Tui over the past 40 years are still in

service today. As well as trailer design and builds, Mills-Tui Limited offers customers a full range of other services such as servicing and repairs (all brands of tuck bodies and trailers), parts, refurbishing, training, finance, and general transport engineering. Dean says that the key factor in the company’s longevity and success is its staff. On the current payroll today are some of the industry’s most well-known and respected names. They carry with them a tradition – and expertise – of consistently producing their best work

for Mill-Tui customers. The company’s mantra of “change/ adapt” also recognises that the company is not stuck or steeped in the past. Dean says that while he honours the past, the company’s focus is firmly on the future. He says Mills-Tui has long had a reputation for being at the forefront of innovation, design excellence, and customer service – all of which he promises will continue under his and Carey-lee’s management.


Mills-Tui Limited.





0800 64 55 78.


One of New Zealand’s most iconic trailer builders.


Dean Purves.


“Old-school” build quality and customer service; new age technology and methodology.


New Zealand Trucking

October 2019






Profile for NZTrucking

New Zealand Trucking October 2019  

New Zealand Trucking magazine is New Zealand's original and leading transport industry masthead. For 30 years, we have been the magazine tra...

New Zealand Trucking October 2019  

New Zealand Trucking magazine is New Zealand's original and leading transport industry masthead. For 30 years, we have been the magazine tra...